DPS: School bus driver who crashed while taking kids home was on her cellphone, not asleep

Posted at 4:57 PM, Dec 27, 2017
and last updated 2017-12-27 19:30:51-05

DENVER – A school bus driver who told police she fell asleep before crashing into a car in east Denver last week was actually on her cell phone at the time of the crash, school officials confirmed with Denver7 Wednesday.

Nykeshia Gilliam, 32, was driving a Denver Public School bus just after 3 p.m. when she crashed a parked vehicle near the area of Newport Street and East 19th Avenue on December 19.

Gilliam told officers at the scene she fell asleep and drifted off to the left side of the road, crashing with a parked Ford Escape in front of a home, according to a police report obtained by Denver7.

But Denver Public Schools spokesman Will Jones said the school district’s director of transportation reviewed surveillance video, which showed her on her cell phone with earbuds plugged in just before the crash.

Using a cell phone while driving a school bus is strictly forbidden and is a violation of school protocol, Jones told Denver7, adding Gilliam was no longer employed with the district.

The Dec. 19 crash only caused property damage to the vehicle and to a home’s front yard. No children were injured at the time of the crash.

Gilliam was cited with careless driving by Denver Police.