By Joshua Rhett Miller
January 7, 2021 | 3:44pm | Updated January 7, 2021 | 3:45pm
A Florida school bus attendant and a teen student got into a fistfight during a ride home — leading to both being arrested, authorities said.
Algarene Richards, 68, and Jayvyn McFadden, 15, were charged following the verbal dispute that turned physical during Wednesday’s afternoon ride from Frostproof Middle-Senior High School, Polk County sheriff officials said.
Both Richards and McFadden “battered each other” during the dust-up, Sheriff Grady Judd said, without elaborating on what started the altercation.
“Students have no right to become physically violent with a school board employee,” Judd said in a statement. “Similarly, adults who are in a position of authority cannot use excessive physical violence against a student.”
Richards, who was charged with child abuse, has been previously arrested for multiple batteries and aggravated assaults with a weapon, as well as resisting a law enforcement officer and shoplifting, Judd said.
The woman, who worked as a substitute bus attendant for Polk County Public Schools since September 2019, was fired by the district following the altercation, authorities said.
“Like we do at our campuses, we strive to create school bus environments in which students feel supported, encouraged and, most important of all, safe,” Deputy Superintendent John Hill said in a statement.
“Violence of any kind will not be tolerated.”
McFadden, meanwhile, was charged with battery on a school official and was taken into custody at a juvenile assessment center, Judd said.
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