Bus driver pleads innocent to assault
A bus driver accused of assaulting a special-needs student on at least three occasions in December pleaded not guilty to three counts of third-degree assault yesterday in Circuit Court.
A public defender entered the plea for Gilbert AhQuin, 50, who declined to comment on the charges.
According to police, the mother of an 11-year-old Kaaawa boy with attention deficit disorder noticed a residue on her son's face when she went to pick him up.
When questioned, the boy told her that the bus driver's aide had duct-taped his mouth shut after he would not stop singing. The boy rides a bus operated by Kailua Local, a Windward bus company contracted by the Department of Education to transport special-needs students.
The school filed a complaint with Kailua Local, but the boy apparently was assaulted again the next day by both the driver, later identified as AhQuin, and the driver's aide.
Trial was set for April 17. AhQuin remains free pending trial.