School bus hijacker lets go of children after getting annoyed by barrage of questions

By: Ian Biong - Inquirer.net | May 23,2021 - 07:22 AM

INQUIRER.net Stock Photo

A bunch of curious kindergartners saved themselves and their school bus driver by annoying a hijacker with a barrage of questions.

Kenneth Corbin, the driver, credited the children for keeping them safe inside the bus hijacked by 23-year-old Jovan Collazo, as seen in his appearance on “Good Morning America” on May 17.

Callazo, an army trainee, earlier this month was caught by a security camera suddenly hopping on board the school bus in South Carolina, USA, while carrying a rifle.

He reportedly ordered Corbin to drive to the next town while holding captive a bus full of students from Forest Lake Elementary.

“The kids were the ones that actually got the gentleman off of the bus and they pretty much had my back as much as my concerns were with them,” Corbin explained in the interview.

“At the end when they started questioning him, it seemed to have frustrated him because his main objective were to get to the next town, but I think we were only on the road about four miles and he just got frustrated with the questions and just told me to stop the bus and get off,” he added.

Authorities believe that Callazo, who was on his third week at Fort Jackson, was trying to get home when he hijacked the bus.

“As we were traveling, I guess he realized there were several students on the bus — kind of scattered throughout,” Corbin was quoted as saying. “He decided to move all the students upfront so he could keep us all in close proximity, and when he did that, especially some of my kindergarteners, they started asking questions.”

“They asked him, ‘Why are you doing this?’ He never did have an answer for this one. They asked, was he going to hurt them? He said ‘no.’ They asked, ‘are you going to hurt our bus driver?’ He said, ‘no. I’m going to put you off the bus,’” Corbin recalled.

Corbin added that Callazo might have sensed more questions coming from the children and just told them, “Enough is enough already,” and ordered Corbin to ‘stop the bus, and just get off.”

Corbin, who was trained to handle such situations, shared that he remained calm and just followed Callazo’s instructions, explaining that he was thinking of the kids and did not want to agitate the hijacker.

He added that Callazo repeatedly asked him how long it would take to reach the next town before they were let go.

Callazo’s rifle did not have ammunition at the time, but the driver and students could not have known that, according to Commander Brig. Gen. Milford H. Beagle Jr. as per ABC News on May 7.

Beagle added that he believed Callazo, whom he described as a quiet young man, did not intend to harm others and just wanted to escape the fort.

“There is nothing that leads us to believe in his counseling, in his screening records coming in, that this had anything to do with harming others, harming himself or anything that links to any type of nefarious activity,” Beagle was quoted as saying.

“We do experience several soldiers that over the course of initial stages have that desire, that anxiety, and due to separation from their families, to get home. We think that was truly his intent and nothing beyond that,” he added.

He added that Callazo repeatedly asked him how long it would take to reach the next town before they were let go.

Callazo’s rifle did not have ammunition at the time, but the driver and students could not have known that, according to Commander Brig. Gen. Milford H. Beagle Jr. as per ABC News on May 7.

Beagle added that he believed Callazo, whom he described as a quiet young man, did not intend to harm others and just wanted to escape the fort.

“There is nothing that leads us to believe in his counseling, in his screening records coming in, that this had anything to do with harming others, harming himself or anything that links to any type of nefarious activity,” Beagle was quoted as saying.

“We do experience several soldiers that over the course of initial stages have that desire, that anxiety, and due to separation from their families, to get home. We think that was truly his intent and nothing beyond that,” he added.

Callazo has since been arrested without incident and is currently facing two dozen charges including 19 counts of kidnapping, according to the report.

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TAGS: annoyed, barrage of questions, lets go of children, school bus hijackers

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