2000-10-28 / Front Page

Joy Ride Ends In Crash 16 Year Old Without License Hits School Bus

By Joan Ward George

Joy Ride Ends In Crash
16 Year Old Without License Hits School Bus

Sixteen year old Christopher Suarez was arrested Monday night for stealing his neighbor’s car, taking it for a "joy ride", and hitting a mini-school bus at the corner of Beach 72 street and Amstel boulevard earlier in the day.

According to police, Suarez, who lives at 528 Beach 72 street, left his home Monday morning to find his neighbor’s Ford Taurus idling in his driveway. Suarez allegedly took the vehicle without permission and proceeded to take an unauthorized drive around the neighborhood. At 8:40 a.m. Suarez approached the intersection of Beach 72 street and Amstel boulevard where he attempted to make a right hand turn heading northbound. Driving erratically, according to witnesses to the accident, Suarez, at the wheel of the Taurus, slammed into the front passenger side of the school mini-bus, which was stopped at a stop sign. Suarez then fled the scene and, according to police, drove the car back to his neighbor’s driveway.

Eight young children, ages 8 to 10, and the school matron and bus driver were treated for minor injuries after the school bus was hit. They were all treated at Peninsula Hospital and released.

A follow-up investigation by the 100 Precinct Detective Squad resulted in a canvassing of the neighborhood where the accident took place and Suarez’s arrest by Police Officer Michael Verna by 6:45 p.m. Monday.

Suarez, who does not have a driver’s license, is being treated as an adult. He has been charged with the unauthorized use of vehicle and with leaving the scene of an accident.

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