CBS2 Exclusive: Boy, 6, Gets Off School Bus On UES And Walks 32 Blocks Alone
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- A 6-year-old special needs student got off the bus at school, but never made it to class.
Instead, they found him more than 30 blocks away. And as CBS2's Dave Carlin reported exclusively Tuesday, the boy's mother is demanding answers about how such a thing happened.
"I felt like a part of me is missing," said the boy's mother, Aisha Baskerville. "I can't even describe that pain."
CBS2 was the only station with the reunion between Baskerville and her son, Deion, who was missing for most of the morning Tuesday.
Aisha Baskerville hugged, but then lectured her son.
He did not show up for classes today at P.S. 169 Robert F. Kennedy School, at 110 E. 88th St. on the Upper East Side, despite being on the school bus.
The bus pulled up to the school, but Deion got off -- and ran as fast as he could away from the school's entrance.
The bus driver said he did not try to chase Deion.
"No, I'm not supposed to," the driver said. "I'm supposed to stay on the wheel."
The bus matron said she did try to catch up with the boy. But that was no consolation for Baskerville, who said schools need stronger security to keep control of her boy -- who has what she called a mild form of autism.
While the exact route he took is not known, Deion started at 88th Street and Park Avenue and was found at 120th Street and Pleasant Avenue -- more than 32 blocks away in East Harlem.
Deion said he was on a mission -- window shopping for toys.
He said he wanted to buy "Spiderman, and the Hulk, and Ironman, and Captain America, and Wolverine."
His mother said someone should have stepped in to stop him.
"We trust in these people to be able to get our kids in and out of the school," Baskerville said. "So why wouldn't you escort my kid inside of the school?"
CBS2 went to school officials at P.S. 169 with specific questions about policies and procedures. Questions were referred to the Department of Education, and the only answer the department provided was just that the matter is under investigation, Carlin reported.
"What are they going to do to make sure that these kids are safe?" Baskerville said.
Baskerville was thankful for strangers who pointed police in the right direction, including Ed Murphy, a doorman. Murphy noticed Deion's Cincinnati Reds baseball cap.
"I pointed at the kid, because he was wearing this big red hat -- you know, Pete Rose," Murphy said. "An hour or two later, a lady came looking for a young boy, and I said was he wearing a red hat -- that's him... he went east, and he's probably somewhere – CVS, or heading that way."
The boy was safe Tuesday afternoon, but his mother said she won't let the matter drop. She is asking what will be done about the next kid who runs.
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