School bus driver walks free after admitting to rape of 15yo student

© Mike Blake
A Tennessee school bus driver who admitted to raping a 15-year-old student has dodged a jail term. Despite pleading guilty to aggravated statutory rape, he was sentenced to 10 years' probation and registered as a sex offender.

In March 2015, a female student at Sale Creek High School was reported missing by her family. The same evening, the girl arrived home and shared horrifying details with her parents and the police.

The girl said that she boarded the bus that Alexander Rodriquez was driving in the afternoon. He took her to a loading station where the buses are kept and then ordered her to get into his car.

Rodriquez drove them to a Super 8 motel, where he later forced her to perform oral sex before raping her. The girl said that she repeatedly said, “no.” She also told Rodriquez that his actions hurt, to which he allegedly said that he was “trying to make it hurt.”

The student said that they remained at the motel until Rodriquez got a phone call, presumably from police asking if he knew anything about the missing teen’s whereabouts.

This is when he put the girl back in his car and took her to a remote location. It reportedly took her an hour to walk home.

When interrogated by police, Rodriquez denied any knowledge about the girl, or even seeing her board his bus. However, he later changed his answer, saying that he gave her a ride to a Krystal restaurant.

When police asked the bus driver about what he knew about the Super 8 motel, Rodriquez asked for an attorney.

“The evidence didn’t really bear that out,” Rodriquez’ lawyer, Johnny Houston, said, casting doubt that the girl was forced to have sex. “So there may have been some overall credibility issues with her.”

Rodriguez has been charged with aggravated statutory rape, to which he pleaded guilty. However, despite the chilling details of the girl’s ordeal, he will not serve a prison term. His four-year sentence in state prison has been suspended.

“The judge asked why the state wasn't asking for time,” Houston said, according to Chattanooga Times Free Press. “We did point out that [Rodriquez] had already served 100 days.”

Rodriquez is going serve a supervised 10 years' probation as a sex offender and will have to wear a GPS monitor.