LAUDERDALE LAKES (CBSMiami) –A Santa-hat wearing, belligerent bus passenger who hurled a rock at a county bus was arrested and is facing charges, and the person who turned him in was his mother.
According to the Broward Sheriff’s Office, that passenger was identified as 19-year-old Demetrius Vidale of Fort Lauderdale.
Investigators said that two passengers, including Vidale, were picked up before noon on Friday, November 18th at NW 16th Street and 441 in Lauderhill. Both were yelling the word “bitch” on the bus over and over again.
When the driver asked them to stop, they refused and continued with their rude remarks.
The driver eventually stopped the bus and ordered them to exit in the 2600 block of NW 49th Avenue in Lauderdale Lakes.
That’s when Vidale, wearing a Santa-type hat and a red Adidas sweat suit with white stripes, walked to the front of the bus and verbally confronted the driver.
Once off the bus, Vidale picked up a rock and hurled it toward the bus. It hit the front passenger-side windshield which left a large crack in the window.
The entire incident was captured on surveillance video. Watch it here.
The bus driver, 51-year-old Ignacio Gonzalez, told CBS4’s Peter D’Oench that he has been a bus driver for five years and was shocked by the teenager’s behavior.
“In all my experience I have never seen anything like this before,” said Gonzalez. “The teenager with the santa-type cap started cussing and using all sorts of profanity. It was very upsetting. It was upsetting because we have children and their parents and their grandparents who use these buses.”
“Then when he left the bus he picked up a rock and threw it at the windshield,” said Gonzalez. “I was in shock. I had asked him to stop swearing and he would not stop. He just kept on cussing. I stopped the bus and that’s when he came at me. Then he left and picked up the rock.”
“I hope people will recognize him on this tape and call the Broward Sheriffs Office or Broward Crimestoppers,” said Gonzalez. “We need to get him and his friend off the street. Bus safety is our big concern here, the safety of our passengers.”
After the video aired on the news, including CBS4; police received several Crime Stoppers tips, Vidale was identified.
Police said Vidale’s mother also saw him on television and turned him in just after 9 p.m. Thursday.
“The mom was very nice, very polite,” Veda Coleman-Wright of BSO said. “She was obviously very upset seeing her son on TV acting the way that he was. And basically he responded by telling our detective that he’s dealing with an anger management issue.”
Judge John Hurley said that Vidale has a long criminal record dating back to when he was 16-years-old and that he used racial slurs during his rant.
“You used the term cracker three times, at least three times,” Hurley said. “You know sire, assuming the bus driver is white, that gives the court great concern this could be a racial thing too.”
Vidale faces one count each of throwing a deadly missile into an occupied bus and criminal mischief.