BROOKVILLE, Ohio (WDTN) – Police say two suspects stole a Twin Valley South school bus and lead police on a high-speed chase, because they wanted to go to Walmart.
The chase ended after the suspects crashed into a parked car.
It happened just before 3am. Police cruiser video shows the school bus running stop signs and speeding down residential streets with the police in hot pursuit.
Major Tom Simon of the Brookville Police Department says a Brookville officer first spotted the bus and thought it was suspicious for a school bus to be on the streets at that time.
“As far as we could tell, the highest speed that the bus got up to was – I’d say the highest it got up to was probably 70 miles per hour,” Simon said.
The bus is seen swerving around corners before the officer in pursuit loses sight of it.
“They knew that the speed that the bus was going, there was a lot of curvy roads, that there was a probability they might crash,” Major said.
And it did crash. Officers found the bus crashed into a SUV parked in front of a home.
Dash-cam video shows officers approaching the vehicle with their guns drawn.
The bus was empty, but it didn’t take long for police to find the suspects.
“The two suspects actually walked up to a Trotwood officer and told them they were hit by a school bus and of course the Trotwood officer thought that was a little suspicious,” Simon said.
Twin Valley South school superintendent Bob Fisher said called the incident “unusual”.
“This isn’t something you hear of, very often. There’s not many people that are going to take a bus from a school because it’s obviously a very noticeable vehicle – when you have something that’s big and yellow driving around late at night,” Fischer said. “So I will say this is a first time incident.”
Fisher said school buses are kept in a lot, when they’re not in use. Although there is a fenced-in portion, it’s not big enough for the entire fleet. But the area is under video surveillance.
“It certainly is something now that we need to look at, just generally, how are we handling our bus situations at night as far as security and things like that,” Fischer said. “I’m sure we’re all going to sit and talk about it, things we could be looking out for in the future.”
Both suspects are 20-years-old and have been booked into the Montgomery County Jail on charges of receiving stolen property.
Police say one of the suspects is homeless and they believe he broke into the bus to sleep on it. They believe he might have turned it on for warmth.
How he got the keys, how the other suspect got involved, and why they decided to take the bus to Walmart, is still under investigation.