Fairfax Co. bus driver, attendant charged with felony neglect after 3-year-old suffers head injury

A Fairfax County Public Schools bus driver and an attendant were arrested and charged last week with felony child neglect after a special needs student suffered a severe head injury, according to Vienna Police.

Authorities said Vienna officers responded to a school bus stop on March 18 for an argument between an FCPS bus driver and a child’s parent after the child had been injured on the bus riding home from school.

Fairfax County firefighters took the child to a hospital for treatment at the family’s request, according to a release. It was determined that the 3-year-old child suffered a severe head injury.

The Vienna Police Department, Fairfax County Child Protective Services and Fairfax County Public Schools conducted independent investigations and the Vienna Police investigation determined that the bus driver and the attendant failed to provide proper care for the 3-year-old.

Warrants charging bus driver Rqia Tabite, 36, and attendant Teresa Wessells, 70, both of Falls Church, of one count of abuse and neglect of a child — a class 4 felony — were issued last Thursday. Tabite and Wessells were arrested Friday by Fairfax County police, brought before a magistrate and released on unsecured bonds.

Police said the 3-year-old is home with his family and getting treatment.

Will Vitka

William Vitka is a Digital Editor and reporter for WTOP.com. He's been in the news industry for over a decade. Before joining WTOP, he worked for CBS News, Stuff Magazine, The New York Post and wrote a variety of books—about a dozen of them, with more to come.

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