12-Year-Old Steals School Bus For Joyride. A 12-year-old boy was recently charged with felony criminal mischief and grand theft, after he allegedly stole a school bus for a joyride in Panama City, Florida. It all started Tuesday mining after police got a call from someone who had seen a young boy driving a school bus near Walmart, according to JCFloridan.com. Around 5:30 a.m. a deputy pulled the bus over and discovered the boy inside, who was later identified as Michael Wade Propst.
The boy had gotten the bus earlier that morning around 4 a.m. when the bus driver left the bus parked in front of his home, with the keys still in the ignition. Police say that Propst was riding his bike in the neighborhood around 4 a.m. when he saw the opportunity to take the bus. “Now what a 12-year-old is doing at 4 o’clock in the morning riding his bike around the neighborhood is a different story,” said Chief Mike Jones of the Bay School District’s Safety and Security Department. “But, he saw the door open, rode up to the door, saw the keys were in the ignition, and there was his opportunity, and he rode away.”
Propst got the bus nearly 15 miles away from the driver’s house and to a Walmart when he was finally pulled over and arrested. According to Jones, the security cameras on the bus captured his alleged bus ride. “We watched him on the video, and you would have though he was one of our trained bus drivers. Twelve years old, and he had no problem driving that bus. I was really shocked that he was able to do that.” Walmart employees saw it a different way. When they had seen Propst try and park the vehicle they knew something was up. “It was just odd the way he was driving it,” Walmart employee Roy Hoover said to UPI.com. “He was having a hard time parking it, like he’d never drove one before.”
After being charged with grand theft of an item worth more than $100,000 and felony criminal mischief, he was also charged with grand theft for a missing student recognition device worth $2,000, according to NewsHerald.com. There was also a large, white paint scrape along the side of the bus that police have yet to determine the cause of. As for the bus driver, he was suspended for two weeks for leaving the bus outside of his home, unlocked and with the keys inside. They went easy on the driver because he had a clean record before the incident.