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Lawsuit: Minooka bus driver struck child across the face

Students board busses at Laraway Elementary School, Wednesday, May 6, 2015, in Joliet, Ill.
Students board busses at Laraway Elementary School, Wednesday, May 6, 2015, in Joliet, Ill.

MINOOKA – A mother is suing Minooka Community High School District 111 after a bus driver allegedly struck her daughter across the face.

The mother alleges that on Oct. 26, 2016, bus driver Tracy Roth “wantonly” struck her daughter in the face while she was a passenger going from her home to Elim Christian School in Palos Heights.

The lawsuit was filed in Will County court on Sept. 28.

The bus was in Shorewood at the time of the incident, which allegedly led the mother and her daughter to suffer injuries “of a personal and pecuniary nature.”

The lawsuit seeks damages in the amount of at least $50,000.

No summons have been issued yet as part of the lawsuit that names Minooka School District 201 instead of District 111. Chicago attorney Alexander Memmen, who is representing the mother, said District 111 is the one that should be named in the lawsuit.

John Troy, the district’s assistant superintendent of business and general counsel, said because district officials have not been served or named in the lawsuit, they decline to comment. He said Roth is a district employee.

The lawsuit is scheduled for case management at 9 a.m. on Jan. 16 in the Will County Court Annex building at 57 N. Ottawa St.

Last September, Minooka District 111 and District 201 officials still were in contract negotiations with Teamsters Local 179, which represents bus drivers and aides.

According to a Sept. 10, 2016, update on negotiations from District 111, the two parties met with a federal mediator to resume negotiations. Fair share and maintenance of standards “remained stumbling blocks,” district officials stated.

Union officials said in a Sept. 9, 2016, update that they proposed a contract that would provide “critical contractual protections” for bus drivers and aides, but would cost taxpayers “almost nothing.”

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