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Metro Bus Operators Union Wants More Protection for Drivers Such as Joseph LaFont, beaten by a passenger on a Metro bus in Washington D.C.

4:00 PM, Dec 12, 2012   |    comments
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WASHINGTON, D.C. (WUSA) - Metro bus drivers are asking for protection. 
A gunman opened fire on a bus Sunday night killing a woman and wounding her child.  The bus operator was also hit and his Union says it's but the latest incident.

Bus operator Joseph Lafont was beaten by a passenger two months ago.

The Metro Bus Operators Union says some shields were added but not nearly enough.

They point to the shooting over this past weekend in which Selina Brown was shot to death and her 23 month old daughter wounded as they tried to board a Metro bus.

The still unidentified bus driver was also hit in the gunfire in that attack.

Cameras have been added to the buses.

Metro today refused to provide 9News with existing video of attacks on its operators, responding to the request as follows, and providing a statement:

"Regarding your video request: Cameras throughout the system, including those on buses, capture hours of video. Without a specific incident to search for it is difficult for transit police to find a random incident involving a bus operator. Additionally, if the video is part of an active investigation Transit Police typically decline to release it... such is the case with Sunday's incident, though it is part of an MPD investigation."

Regarding bus safety in general:
The safety and security of our passengers and employees is our number one priority. While Sunday's incident was not the direct result of a dispute that originated on a Metrobus, we recognize that these types of occurrences, while rare, can and do occur. Metro Transit Police, in partnership with local police departments, respond with increased patrols when situations such as these transpire. This is currently taking place and we will continue those efforts for the foreseeable future.

See the above video for reports by Delia Goncalves and Bruce Johnson.

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