I-Team 10 Investigation: Bus monitor charged with sexual abuse

Posted at: 06/04/2013 5:12 PM
Updated at: 06/04/2013 6:06 PM
By: Brett Davidsen

Rochester Police say a school bus monitor sexually abused a severely disabled child.

61-year-old Robert Hoff is under arrest. He worked for Monroe Transportation.

Police say the victim was a nine-year-old girl and they described her as a severely autistic, handicapped and unable to speak. Investigators say Robert Hoff groped the child on the bus until an alert and suspicious bus driver saw what was going on and reported it.

Hoff is 61-years-old. He lives in the city of Rochester and is currently in the Monroe County Jail. I-Team 10 went to his house Tuesday to see if there was anyone else there who could tell us more about him, but no one was there. Hoff was working as a bus monitor for Monroe Transportation, a company that contracts with many school districts and transports more than 1,600 special needs kids each day.

According to the bus driver's statement that I-Team 10 obtained, she was suspicious of Hoff for a while and said something didn't seem right. So she decided to monitor the monitor. The driver says she adjusted the rear-view mirror downward so she could see Hoff and the child. That's when she says she witnessed him touching the girl in her private areas. The bus driver says she yelled to him to stop and then reported the incident, leading to his arrest last week.

I-Team 10 spoke with Monroe Transportation Vice President David Bonacchi and asked him about Hoff's background. He says Hoff underwent an extensive background check before he was hired and no red flags came up.

David Bonacchi said, “It's very upsetting. It's very disappointing, but it goes to the character of the company. Our driver saw what took place, reported it to us so we could get this individual off our buses so this will never happen again."

Hoff is charged with first degree sexual abuse.

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