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Charge Filed After Child Left on School Bus

Posted at: 01/25/2013 12:47 PM
Updated at: 01/25/2013 6:27 PM
By: Travis Dill

Child endangerment charges were filed Friday against the Fond du Lac bus driver accused of leaving left a child on a bus in the cold.

The temperature was in the single digits last week when a Head Start student was left on a bus on the Fond du Lac Reservation according to band officials.

On Friday the Carlton County Attorney charged 53-year-old Thomas Mitchell Soderholm with child endangerment. In the criminal complaint Soderholm said he looked under the seats for children's legs after parking the bus.

But three hours later another employee found the 3-year-old child pounding on a window one row behind the driver seat.

That discovery was made after the boy never made it to his classroom. According to the complaint, Soderholm said a bus monitor told him the bus was empty before parking it, but he knew the bus monitor had cognitive disabilities.

The boy's mother brought him to a local hospital where he was warmed up for a few hours and released.

Last week band officials said the driver and the monitor were suspended pending an investigation, and now Soderholm is set to appear in court early next month.

Band officials did not return calls for comment on the incident on Friday.