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Former Forbes Magazine Publisher Accused Of Chasing Down School Bus In Connecticut

FAIRFIELD, Conn. (CBSNewYork) -- A prominent Westport, Connecticut resident has been charged in connection with a road rage incident.

As CBS2's Lou Young reported, police said late last year the man chased down and pulled over a school bus with children inside.

Police said it happened on a wooded stretch in Fairfield, Connecticut days before Christmas.

James Berrien, 64 – a former president and publisher of Forbes Magazine – was driving his BMW at the time. He was apparently so enraged at the bus driver that he gave chase, pulled ahead, got out of his car, and tried to board.

"We can't have individuals that are confronting bus drivers with schoolchildren on the bus," said Fairfield police Chief Gary McNamara.

Numerous witnesses, including parents and a dozen elementary school students onboard, described a very heated scene at three different locations along the route – with the angry motorist at one point banging on the side of the bus, prying open the door, and trying to mount the stairs.

Bus driver Danny Castro, who declined to comment Thursday, reported the incident. Police took their evidence to a judge.

Berrien has been charged with breach of peace and disorderly conduct. At his home in neighboring Westport, he and his wife were not interested in discussing the matter.

"No," he told CBS2's Young at the door. "Go away."

"I think that his side of the story is through his lawyer," his wife added.

Berrien's lawyer sent Young a statement saying Berrien "strongly disputes the claims of the bus driver."

Police see a message in the case.

"We all, as people, at times become stressed, and sometimes it's very difficult to manage that," McNamara said. "All we're asking is that people -- all of us, collectively – try to keep our emotions in check."

Berrien's emotional outburst could cost him up to $500 in fines and as much as three months in jail.


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