Students stranded in storm

In one month, Charlottesville Transit Service passengers can look forward to electronically equipped kiosks to let riders track bus locations and arrivals in real time. Unfortunately, the new "bus finder" system wasn't unveiled in time to help a handful of students left waiting outside in a cold rain for a bus that never came.

Devin Benson, a 17-year-old Murray High student, took the last bus to Piedmont Virginia Community College February 12 for his practices-of-criminal-investigations class– and wound up with no class and no return.

Benson arrived around 5:20pm. Because of bad weather, the college canceled its evening classes at 5:25, says Benson, and he waited with three or four other students at the bus shelter.

"I waited at least an hour," he says. "Someone else with a cellphone called and was told the bus was canceled. Ice started forming on the back of my backpack."

When the students heard the bus was canceled, "We tried to go back in the school," says Benson, "but they'd locked the doors."

While Benson was eventually able to catch a ride with a relative, he says one student had to hire a taxi while another one hitchhiked.

"The last 5:45 day route couldn't get up the hill," explains CTS manager Bill Watterson. "We told several people who contacted us to meet at the bottom of the hill at the Visitors Center."

Devin's mother, Denise Benson, is incredulous that the students were left stranded and were never told that the bus had been canceled. She says she had no problem getting up the hill when she went to pick up her son around 6:45pm.

"It wasn't bad at all– I was surprised PVCC was closed," says Benson.

"There's no foolproof method,"Watterson says. "When you have a weather event, buses will be delayed. The best way is to call CTS."

Such incidents might become a thing of the past after March 24 when 25 bus stops get the electronic finders. In the meantime, Watterson advises curious passengers to call 970-3649.

48 comments

Ghostwriter. :)

Lightbulb, IMHO the Silva/Austin event was when people in this town should have realized something is terribly broken in the local criminal justice system.

Which unsubstantiated claims would you like for me to clarify?

Here's some more unsubstantiated claims for you. I don't care if you believe them or not:

In a case held in a local courtroom a while back a judge ruled that the testimonies of the officers involved were, and I quote, "diametrically opposed"! The judge was NOT a happy camper as he made his closing remarks. I personally think this was the judge's way of saying the cops couldn't even get their lies straight among themselves? How would you interpret what this judge said? I think one of the cops in particular felt like his butt had just been chewed up and spit out. It must have been terribly humiliating to his little ego because he was instrumental in another charge being placed against the same person later. And this second charge was laughed out of court too.

In another case heard in a local courtroom a while back the judge left his court, walked to his chambers and told his baliff face to face that he could not believe the entire chain of command in a local police department had just committed perjury in his courtroom. You tell me, what was the judge saying? He had just dismissed the criminal charge against the innocent citizen, so the judge obviously didn't think the innocent citizen, right?

And... there is no special-est lil' buddy ever involved here. Sorry.

Your the one playing detective. Don't let me discourage you.

Sick, I absolutely believe that there is some corruption within the police force. Much as I believe there is some corruption in almost every walk of life these days. I don't know ANYONE that doesn't also believe this. In most of your posts you are preaching to the choir. I'm not a cop and am not an apologist for cops.

If you are, as you repeatedly claim, privy to this much damaging information regarding local police corruption (and I believe you probably are), then please tell us why you don't blow the whistle on these guys? The person with the information blows the whistle. The rest of us don't know any of the names or individuals involved, so we're sure as hell not in a position to do anything about it, okay? It's up to YOU.

You report a private conversation between a judge and bailiff in chambers. You don't mention that anyone else was in the room, so either the judge or bailiff told you what was said. Can you tell us why neither of these individuals is doing anything about this?

The thing that is irritating to me is what you're doing with the information you have. You choose to be purposely coy and gleeful, yet oddly never seem very concerned. I find this very strange. If there are victims involved, why aren't you standing up for them? Saying "Officers A & B did this and this to Mr X and we taxpayers shouldn't put up with it!" Instead you crack jokes and taunt teenagers.

You speak of vague incidents and their great importance, but never back any of it up with names and dates. I've known genuine whistleblowers-- folks who have had their phones tapped by the federal government because of what they knew and then reported. People who were fired and lost their pensions. It takes real cojones to change a corrupt system. But you're not making any effective change, only whining about things.

HA

OK Sheep dog, ohh smart one, you got me good right there! I might never recover from that slapshot! Classes in criminal investigation prepare a person for exactly what type of career? Other than a law enforcement position, who investigates crime? I know there's a simple answer, but damn, I can't think of it! I am most definitely afflicted with tunnel vision while trying to think of an answer to this.

Hey, do you have "My Humps" on your iPod? I do. And I have the video on my new 16GB Touch too. I actually figured out how to output it to the DVD monitors in my vehicles (ohh smart me), but I then have to be extra careful going through crosswalks. Because once I get to hopping and bouncing around in the driver's seat to the beat of the tune, I don't know if the last hump was my landing back down on the driver's seat or my running over a crippled man in a wheelchair! It really gets confusing and I have a hard time paying attention to my surroundings as I drive with "My Humps" playing. :)

CTS is a customer service business? OK. But so is the cop shoppe. So why do you get confused and upset when the cop shoppe has a few disgruntled customers? Different standards here, bud?

Now as far as checking the oil in a car, you and I both know there are coppers out here now that don't even know how to open the hood or check the oil in their troll car. I kid you not, I saw one in city yard recently walking around the car looking for where to put the gas into a Crown Victoria. I was expecting the cop to yank the license plate off the rear and hurl it through the air like the scene in Chevy Chase's "Vacation" movie. It was absolutely hilarious! If you think I am making this up as I go, I will put you in touch with the department head that was with me at the time and laughed his butt off! He said, "Did they give (the cop) a map to find the gas pumps for Chists sake!?" We were sitting outside the bus shoppe watching this foolishness.

Now if we can all live without a cell phone, why is it every cop we pass in traffic has a cell phone up to their ear? Somebody recently said somewhere that it's against cop shoppe policy, but you will have to show it to me in writing before I believe it.

I do understand why you might be upset at CTS spending so much money. You are like the rest most likely, you think that money could have been better spent in giving you and fellow cop employees a $350,000 home each, or at least giving you and your fellow coppers a 35% raise this year? I agree. I think the starting salary for a local cop should be at least as much as the city manager or county executive makes. If not more! I will vote for more! Let's give you all a $250,000 a year salary. And at least $5,000,000 in life insurance. (That's $5 million by the way) And health and dental coverage that pays 100% of all costs. And a take-home car with no limits on the amount of gas you can burn every month. Hell, we'll even let you drive the car off-duty as long as you promise not to drive DUI and wreck it like so many other cops nationwide are doing. I would even vote to pay for your civilian clothing as well. Because cops all like to wear three piece suits and look like undercover detectives when having to appear in court for speeding and parking tickets. Clint Eastwood ain't got nothing over these guys! Any other benefits I have overlooked maybe? What about absolutely free high speed internet service? The Internet is an effective crime tool.

Here's a few more $100,000 public employees who laughed in the public's face. But it finally caught up to them!

--------------------------------------------------

February 29, 2008

FLEMINGTON, NEW JERSEY ¢Ã¢â??¬” A Clinton Township police officer has been suspended from the force after his indictment on charges related to a hit-and-run cover-up.

Bradley Stockelberg, 43, of Flemington was indicted on eight counts in connection to the alleged cover-up of the crash, caused by fellow officer Jason Peltack, in Finnagel's Restaurant parking lot on Route 31 in Clinton Township in August 2006.

Peltack lost his job on the force, as did officer Christopher Szymanski, who participated in falsifying the report. Under the terms of his plea bargain, Peltack may never serve as a police officer in New Jersey.

Township Police Director Robert Manney said 19-year veteran Stockelberg, who was not on duty on the day of the accident, was earning a salary of $90,132 a year, and is now suspended without pay until the conclusion of the case.

¢Ã¢â??¬Ã?â??When I was advised of the indictment, I called him in myself and advised him of his suspension,¢Ã¢â??¬ Manney said.

Manney said the department is cooperating with the Hunterdon County Prosecutor's Office and waiting to see what they will do about Stockelberg's involvement, but he would have preferred getting it over with all at once.

¢Ã¢â??¬Ã?â??It's never good, but this is the third time this same case will be dragged out again,¢Ã¢â??¬ Manney said.

The grand jury indictment handed up in state Superior Court Judge Roger F. Mahon's Flemington courtroom included three counts of third-degree hindering apprehension, fourth-degree obstruction and tampering with evidence, two counts of second-degree official misconduct, and one count of second-degree conspiracy.

¢Ã¢â??¬Ã?â??The indictment of Brad Stockelberg marks a sad day for both our criminal justice system and the people for which that system was created to protect,¢Ã¢â??¬ said Stockelberg's attorney, Al Rylak, in a press release. ¢Ã¢â??¬Ã?â??For many years, as both a paid police officer and a volunteer EMT, Brad Stockelberg has been, and is, a loyal, honest, and well-respected public servant. The evidence will exonerate Brad Stockelberg. Unfortunately, there is nothing other than vindication that can restore his now-tarnished reputation.¢Ã¢â??¬

Look dude, I am not busting on you personally, I am busting on a society that created situations where it is front page news when an almost grown man is stuck in the rain at a bus stop. There are guys a year older than you walking around with 80 pound packs in 120 degree heat getting shot at. I just think they should have found a 12 year old girl to use for fodder. You are a victim of sensationalisitic journalism. Sorry, nothing personal.

I sought out the hook, becuase no one, teenager, toddler or adult should be stranded like I was. in fact, 2 adults were stranded with me. As for high school, I am in high school. The reason it is front page is becuase of the bus system's propsed overhaul.

i never thought the focus was upon age. This thread shows me that the high schooler has more sense than mommas boy. It's a question of intelligence.

LAPD, beating up on our youth? momma's potty trained tried and made a fool of himself. Are you sure you want to go down that road? If you were REALLY interested in the answer to your question, you'd ask the school board or the superintendent and demand an answer. Cheap shots usually come from weaklings.

CVille Eye, I never thought the focus was upon age. Does that sound familiar? Of course it does! :)

Would you call the following a cheap shot too? Study it very carefully.

".... how incompetently CTS is run.... I have no patience with IDIOTS running a multi-million-dollar operation who are spending more time looking for ways to expand their sorry service."

Unlike you, I don't consider you to be a weakling simply because you called all of CTS a bunch of incompetent IDIOTS. I think you expressed a legitmate concern you feel strongly about, just like I did with the education it seems our kids are receiving nowadays.

It is pretty amazing how a story about the bus service can change into a conversation about the police. I figure I'd make a few points:

-Criminal justice is a degree applicable to anyone interested in the legal profession. My sister went into criminal justice and is now a paralegal. Other options in the field include corrections, probation/parole, social services, loss prevention, zoning enforcement or many other legal/government jobs.

-Sick of the Local Rambos, I'm thinking that you have a control complex, and it seems like you have a hatred for government and its attempts to enforce its laws. Government is a human created system, and like you or me, it will have flaws, and so will its employees. No matter how good the background check, bad cops or civil servants will exist. The funny thing is that in most of the articles you post about the police there was no cover-up -- the officer in the wrong was fired, arrested, or even sent to prison.

I'm curious to hear if you've ever been on a ride-along with the city, county or other jurisdiction. Many of the officers are working day to day, supporting a family. Their first priority is to protect the public. Some officers do that a bit over-zealousy, but many want to do their basic jobs. And like I said before, they all make mistakes. By choosing to become a cop, they give up a normal life, endanger themselves daily, earn low pay and carry enormous liability. Despite the responsibility police officers and many civil servants undertake, citizens like you chose to disrespect them and complain at every opportunity.

Have you ever attended a city council meeting to voice your concern? Written your local representative? Arranged a meeting with Chief Longo? What were your thoughts when local police acted swiftly with the serial rapist arrest and other recent notable catches?

I have a deep respect for civil servants, and hate to see their duties dragged through the mud. On that day with Devon, CTS made a mistake. Luckily it wasn't life threatening, but it was still just a mistake. CTS operates an excellent service for this area, and they should be commended for wanting to improve their service.

quote: "It is pretty amazing how a story about the bus service can change into a conversation about the police."

Yeah, my bad! I mentioned Devon taking classes in criminal investigation and put the ball into play. Once the ball is in play it's just like a good tennis match around here! :)

Now in reference to the rest of your reply: Police work is not even in the top 10 of the most dangerous professions. The profession is actually in jeopardy of slipping out of the top 20 currently. The driver delivering goods in a Walmart semi has a better chance of getting killed tonight. A pilot also has better chances of dying tonight. And the most dangerous profession... logging. Those guys cutting trees down to make paper for your printer stand the highest chance of getting killed every day of their lives. (The statistics are almost always based on 1 death per 1,000 employees)

Yes, I have been in a ride-a-long program. For two years on a daily basis with the Albemarle County Sheriff's Office. Long before the terms "ride-a-long" or "Explorer Program" even existed in normal everyday discussion. This was back before the Albemarle County Police Department even existed as well. And it was when they at best had 2 to 3 deputies working at any given time. Their chances of getting killed was 10 times worse than today due to lack of manpower. I won't even go into how, at age 17, I singlehandedly saved the life of a deputy sheriff one night on patrol. He appreciates it to this day, and that is all that matters to me.

Some officers do their job a bit over-zealousy? You mean like almost running two civilians in a crosswalk, and then arresting them? Or do you mean perhaps running over a wheelchair bound individual in a crosswalk, and then ignoring all their training and physically snatching the injured party up off the pavement as if to make the incident go away? Which of course injured the person even more.

They all make mistakes? I disagree. Not all. Some stop and think before engaging the public. Some realize that "contempt of cop" is not a crime. Some can actually control their tempers. They give up a normal life, endanger themselves daily, earn low pay and carry enormous liability? Who twisted their arm and made them apply to be a cop? The answer is nobody. What other professions do you hear playing the "dangerous occupation" card all the time? None?

What were my thoughts when local police acted swiftly with the serial rapist arrest and other recent notable catches? Acted swiftly? Are you kidding me? The ONLY tip that finally broke the serial rapist case had to given to the police twice before they even looked into it. Correct me if I am wrong. And in the recent murder case it didn't take a mensa candidate to figure out the suspects had ditched the victim's car pretty damn close to where they live. This was a no-brainer.

Have I ever attended a city council meeting to voice your concern? Nope. I view it as a total waste of time. Written my local representative? Nope, but I have talked to the State Attorney General about several things, yes. Arranged a meeting with Chief Longo? Attempted to. I believe he has no interest in discussing anything with me. Another attempt will be made eventually, with many sworn documents being available for his review. We'll see how that goes.

Sick says:
"You're right, I won't put up or shut up. I would never give you the initials now. Because curiosity is now killing you. And because you have dared me to prove my statement. This is pretty much like asking me to give up my 4th Amendment rights and submit to DNA testing to prove my innocence. There, I found a way out of it. :)"

What, are you in elementary school or something? Really mature stuff there. How on earth did you ever avoid shooting yourself in the foot as a deputy? Yet you have the unmitigated arrogance to crack on the grammar and syntax of others.

Look, in previous posts you've talked about having both a laptop and DVD in your vehicle. I suspect you drive a massive SUV because a photo of you standing next to it was published in this paper a few weeks ago. Don't have to be a cop to figure it out!

My opinion that you over-identify with your former career in law enforcement (i.e. "playing cop") is based solely on your own words and the fact that the frequency of your postings here and at cvillenews cannot be disputed. You do seem to miss your former job very much based on your visits to the city yard, and your ad nauseam claims that you know more about the business of policing than the police themselves, blah-di-blah blah.

Look, I have no idea if your upcoming court case, and the ones that preceded it are based on valid claims. Perhaps they are. But at this point I doubt anybody cares anymore. All I know is that you rarely ever back up your statements with actual names and dates, and seem to have all the time in the world to play with people on the internet.

When you started randomly mocking a 17-year-old kid while hiding behind your screen name, you told me everything about your personality and agenda I'll ever need to know. Let's see: Sheepdog actually works on the streets as a cop and in doing so makes his community a safer place. YOU spend all your time posting redundant drivel and blowing hot air all over the internet. So, out of the two of you, I wonder which one is deserving of respect by the community? I certainly know which one of you I'd want protecting my back if there was trouble. (Hint: the one that doesn't whine like a little girl 24/7.)

Ghostwriter says:
"Lightbulb has been duped too."

Then I'm sure you'll care to elaborate...

Sick, since you seem to have spent your career pounding sand, I'd reckon you'd know all there is to know about the desert. If you're not actually the snoozing deputy himself, then you're certainly his most special-est lil' buddy ever.

When you first started posting in the wake of the Austin/Silva incident, I was really glad to see someone like you telling it like it is. But then you started employing bully pulpit tactics and making one unsubstantiated claim after another. Giving out just enough info with your special spin attached to it to damage reputations, but never having the testicles to stand four-square behind what you were inferring. Whoever the hell you are, your opinion has been rendered meaningless by your chronic ranting.

Lightbulb, you are correct. I did not say how many people were in the judge's chambers or how I obtained the information. But you have now pretty much implied I received the information from the baliff. Would this be sorta like an unsubstantiated claim on your behalf?

I used the two examples above because each involved more than one crooked corrupt lying cop. And because there is no way in hell these two particular examples can ever be disputed. Is there any particular reason you assume that people bigger than I didn't attempt to do something about these cases of perjruy? I ask the same question you do, why did the judges not do anything about this perjury? Any agency asked to investigate an entire chain of command in a police department would ask the same question. The case where the judge said he felt the testimonies of the officers were "diametrically opposed" to one another was made in open court and appears in the transcript of the trial. You would think this in itself would be enough to prompt some sort of investigation by somebody. The judge's remark actually had me running to a dictionary to make sure I understood the definition of "diametrically". I felt like I was in The Twilight Zone when the judge actually made this remark in open court. And I specifically recall wondering just how embarrassed and humiliated the lying cops must have felt when the judge made this remark in open court. And I also wondered just how good it made the decent hard working honest cops feel at the same time. (And Lightbulb, you actually taught me something. I feel somewhat obligated to say Longo had not even come to town when all of this took place, I don't want to imply he was involved in any of the above.)

By the way, one of the cops involved in the above perjury examples was just recently investigated by the Virginia State Police in yet another suspected case of perjury. The cop being investigated once again skated away free. So what can people like myself do other than make it known and whine about it? That's the trouble in this town now, law enforcement agencies hide their dirty laundry and don't want people such as myself discussing it once it has been hidden. I guess this is why I enjoy discussing it. And my reward is somewhat contained in your first sentence where you said, "I absolutely believe that there is some corruption within the police force".

Let me ask you a question now. If there is a police officer whose credibility has been so badly damaged that a commonwealth attorney refuses to use their testimony in court under any circumstances, should that cop remain on the payroll being in a position where he can't really enforce the law? Do you suppose any written records of these officer's circumstances exist? Do you know how many officers of this description there are currently in this immediate area? Would you even want to know the answer to the question if Miller and Longo were to voluntarily admit to and release this information?

Since this reply is like a big cannon sitting in front of my office, and it appears I have lit the fuse and set off another round, let me assure you that I am in no way talking about a majority of our local cops being crooked or corrupt. But the ones who are crooked and corrupt, and those who know it and do nothing about it automatically doubles the percentage.

Sick, thanks for your well-considered response. As a citizen-activist, I would certainly be interested in truthful answers to every question you've posed.

I never implied it was the bailiff-- I merely stated that IF they were the only two people in the room, then you would have probably heard about the discussion from one of them, EITHER judge or bailiff.

Once again, no one reading this can do anything about the situation because you haven't provided us with names or departments. If there are repeat offenders (perjurers etc) on the force, then yeah, I sure as heck want to know about it.

Sick, you've told many stories about cops. But what about that good ol' boy deputy who was canned for sleeping during court and when he was supposed to be guarding his prisoners? Now there's a case where justice was served quickly, and his superior officers weren't covering up for him, right?

Is he the same guy that has such a desperate need for attention, and inability to not over-identify with his former profession, that he's been "playing cop" ever since he was canned? Or maybe I'm wrong. Perhaps he eventually found gainful employment somewhere proving that he's not a total Johnny One-Note after all. Maybe he works too hard supporting his family to spend all his time driving aimlessly around Charlottesville wasting gas in a massive SUV equipped with DVD and laptop, stopping every now and then to check in and gossip with folks from his old life while they're trying to work. Oh, and then posting the results of those conversations on the internet as if they were facts. 'Cause if that's all he does all day then he's a pretty pathetic shell of a man.

I prefer to think that ol' deputy has actually finally made himself useful to society, and spends his days either working or volunteering, instead of whining and beating the same tiresome drum over and over and over...

Ghostwriter, now you can better understand why it took over 10 years before a civilian finally solved the serial rapist case. Some people couldn't find a particle of sand in the Mojave desert. And if they do stumble over a particle of sand in the Mojave desert, they swear it's a diamond.

ps - you guys and girls had better enjoy me while it lasts. When Spring finally breaks I won't have the time or desire to sit here and debate much with you all. :)

Hey sheep dog, did you see this in the news? Pretty sad, placing hundreds of people's lives in jeopardy if any of these fires had gotten out of control! To me this was more serious than the Virginia state trooper who was placing bombs in buildings so his bomb sniffing doggie and him could be heroes.

-------------------------------------

March 2, 2008

WASHINGTON, DC - A policewoman suspected in a series of small fires in restrooms in buildings around Capitol Hill late last year has admitted guilt and agreed to resign and pay restitution to avoid prosecution.

A Capitol Police officer agrees to resign after admitting setting fires in Capitol Hill buildings late last year.

Karen Emory, a U.S. Capitol Police officer, must resign by March 4, get a year of professional counseling and avoid any other criminal activity over the next 12 months.

She was accused of destroying government property and indicted after investigators and prosecutors suspected she was behind at least two fires in women's restrooms in the buildings.

None of the fires caused injury or substantial damage, and restitution is listed at $215 dollars, payable within 90 days.

As part of an agreement for deferred prosecution, Emory signed a statement saying she ¢Ã¢â??¬Ã?â??willfully destroyed property of the United States, specifically, toilet roll dispensers and toilet tissue under the control of the architect of the Capitol,¢Ã¢â??¬ causing damages of less than $1,000.

She has been with U.S. Capitol Police department since January 2003.

The fires occurred on at least seven days between late September and early November and initially were a puzzle for Capitol police, since some were in locations not yet open to the public for the day.

In preparing their case, prosecutors used information from a police colleague and a civilian witness to charge Emory with an incident on November 2.

According to court documents, she had just left a restroom where burned toilet paper had been found. The only other visitor that morning told police she had earlier used the same stall, and there was no burned paper.

Video surveillance from hallway and other cameras was also part of the case, according to police officials and court documents. No footage has been released.

Police spokeswoman Sgt. Kimberly Schneider said it would be a security risk to disclose the capabilities of various cameras around the U.S. Capitol.

The issue is how customers of CTS were and probably will be treated. This incident is only an example. Are you saying that if a person wants to use CTS, he should get a cell phone? I would go even farther and say, if a person wants to use CTS, he ought to drive a car. You can't always expect to be stranded near a cell tower.

hi, this is the guy who was stranded. first momma's boy, just because you suck doesn't mean I suck. Second, it was 30 degrees, raining and windy. second, I lived a good 20 minute drive away, or an hour and a half walk. I really didn't want to walk down a highway at night in the freezing rain. I really had no option. I didn't have a cellophone on me becuase, I left it on the charger. third, I ride CTS not becuase I like it but becuase I don't own a car yet. fourth, sick, shut up. also I do not want to become a cop, so shut up. also, this is the same Devin who posts on law enforcement sites. thank for everyone out there who thought before they typed. as for CTS, the only way we found out it was canceled was after calling them. They never said a word.

how the hell do you think 5th graders get home in the rain when a storm comes up? The buses only give you a ride if you are less than a mile.

The transit system may suck but other than announcing it on the radio how much more should they do? Perhaps Charlottesville should have cell phone text tree like Va Tech or UVA so no ever has to deal with anything. Maybe we could expand it so that everyone in town is alerted when the sun is about to go down so that they don't get caught outside in the dark. If you listen to the weather, and know that often times classes are cancelled and bus service is cancelled then you should not be surprised. Perhaps the government should send 4 wheel drive limo.

The transit service has a stronger obligation to not cause an accident than they do to get all of the potential riders home. Suppose the bus had come, you had gotten on it and then it got stuck leaving the area? Would you still be mad?

County school kids get dropped at their farms gate to walk a mile to the house on a muddy road all the time. Public transportation is not Constitutional right.

That 58 year old, $100K+/year is making idiots of us all. Liked your first two paragraphs and glad to see that you're watching.

"imcredulous" that a 17 year old boy was out in the rain?

He is less than a year away from being a soldier. Get over it.

If he had gotten on the bus and it slid off the road would you be "incredulous" that they didn't cancel service?

OK Cville Eye, you got me wound up again! You asked for it. :)

I wonder if this is the same "Devin" that posts in local law enforcement topics occasionally? Studying criminal investigations, perhaps wants to be a cop? And yet can't find his own way home during an ice storm? Yeah, he's good cop material. He'll fit right in with the rest of the rookies.

This Devin is the Devin who rode a bus to what ended up being a remote spot comparable under the circumstances as being out in the sticks. The same thing obviously happened to several other riders. Are you trying to say it represents good transit practice? I'll bet you wouldn't care if your daughter was given a ride to a frat party at 2 AM not knowing that the party was over and her hosts were in bed. Do you think she's safe. I haven't ridden that sorry system for 14 months and, after reading this story, I won't ride it again for another 14 months. I have no patience with idiots running a multi-million-dollar operation who are spending more time looking for ways to expand their sorry service. I hope this gets you going and maybe it gets some others going OUT OF TOWN. We do not have robots driving these buses. It is not hard to just say "I'll take you out there, but you'll have to find your own way back. CTS is shutting for the evening."

Sick, I imagine if you lived several miles from PVCC and stood out in an ice storm for an hour waiting for a bus that was scheduled to come but never did, you'd be a little ticked too. Suppose nobody had had a cell phone? But it all has to come back to cop hating, right? Even though this story has nothing to do with cops. You ought to be glad that this kid takes a bus to his class rather than putting another car on Route 20.

Of course I have heard about the $100 million Rapid Transit proposal. As soon as the housing market improves a tad we will have double digit tax assessment increases again to pay for it. Maybe 15% in 2010, 12% in 2011, and another 14% in 2012. By the time they add another 12% in 2013, I will be paying taxes on a $500,000 home.

Watch out for about a 50% increase on your water and sewer bill too. You do know we have to rebuild the sewer system real quick.

And again, like you, I didn't think age is a focus of this discussion. The identity of imcompetent IDIOTS (your words) you speak of are well known in the community too. Bullying is bullying whether you pick on a 58-year-old adult or a 17-year-old teenager. Devin is old enough to fire back at me if he does not feel I am being sincere.

Every $100,000 city employee is making idiots of us all. Add in benefits, take home car, and all the free gas they can burn 24 hours a day... and they're actually $145,000 employees! I just came in from picking somebody up at the airport. You wouldn't believe the city take-home vehicles I saw headed home into Greene County, Madison County and wherever. The amount of city issued take-home vehicles would blow your mind away! We're footing their $2.64 a gallon gasoline to and from work every day of the year. And yet people like Devin get stranded because city employees can't get to him and perform their duties.

Well there are alot of sides to this argument. Devon, glad to see you want an education no matter what the focus. I think it's great you don't have a car, so many people your age get strapped with a car payment they can't afford. Sick, only you could turn this into a cop issue. Since your so smart and your grammer so great, I thought you would realize not everyone in criminal justice wants to be a cop. CTS...WOW...Where do you start. They should have told the passengers if they were not coming back. It is a customer sevice business no matter who runs it. We are talking about the same people that spent 30+ million dollars of city money on a transit station so they wouldn't lose an 18 million dollar grant. The only thing it's good for is nice restrooms at fridays after five. Maybe next year they can lease a $20,000 christmas tree to go in it.
Back to you Devon, you need to plan ahead buddy. I don't know you, but I get tired of watching you age group, and older, walk around unprepared. Shorts in the winter and no jacket isnt very smart. (not saying you fit in to this) Too many people these days can't do anything for themselves. I run into young people that can't even check the oil in their car. If your stranded.....walk.....If you have to pay for a cab....boo hoo, get over it. AND YES PEOPLE, we can survive without a cell phone. We all have bad days and we all work through it, you can work through it better if you're prepared. Know where you are, have extra gear, like when it's cold an your bus might not come back. Pretend it's your Ipod, you wouldn't forget that...and yes I have an Ipod and love it.

Devin, I'm just glad you made it home safely. If you ever find yourself in this position again, please call me. I have studded snow tires on one of my vehicles and I can make sure you get home.

By the way, just curious. Looking at your grammar, spelling and sentence structure, did you graduate high school?

They are adults, he's not. They're paid, he's not. Heard talk about a $100M+ Bus Rapid Transit project recently? Rahter than pick on the product of our local education system (his identity is known) why not spend use your overbearing mouth to pick on somebody your size? Ever heard of bullying? Bakd off!

Thanks for answering my question, Devin. You're in high school. I want you to know and believe I am not picking on you now. My concern now is with the public school system. And unfortunately you're a prime example of what I have been saying all along. After looking at your grammar, spelling and sentence structure, can you please tell what they are teaching in these public school systems now?

thanks m also the only reason i called my mom was becuase I knew she was this side of town and was first number I could think of.

If mom could get her car up the hill (I've gotten mine up that hill in a lot worse weather than we've seen recently), the 4 million ton bus that everybody says is too large could also get up the hill. What is CTS going to do when it moves to the new Garage Palace de Avon? There are hilss and freezing bridges over there. Oh, I didn't realize that this is part of the City's new cost savings program: save money by not running the buses in bad weather. With the new transit authority we can buy lots of buses with the savings from not running them.

She'd be squalling pretty loud, I'll give you that. But she had to bring her own car up the road instead - either way, there was a chance of an accident. And if the 3-4 other students waiting with him all got separate rides, well, that was 4-5 cars out on the road as opposed to one bus.

I will admit that there is certainly a "momma's boy" element to the story, but the real issue here isn't that the kid had to stand outside for an hour. It's that the bus driver dumped these people off without any warning that service was ending early, and when the bus couldn't make it up the hill CTS shrugged its collective shoulders and said "oh well." Surely they could've sent one of the smaller buses? That's just crappy customer service, and it's one more reason why most people don't ride CTS. Yes, I know most people have cell phones, but if they could get rides so easily they wouldn't be taking the bus in the first place.

Hope they put one out at PVCC.

M, let me answer you in order.
1- Yes, I would be ticked, but I could find my way home safely in some shape, fashion or form I hope.
2- It's 2008. One person, even the smallest crowd, always has a cell phone. A better argument would be what if everybody's cell phone battery was dead.
3- It's not always about cop hating. But if this is a criminal justice student hoping for a career in law enforcement there's going to be a lot more times he's stranded out in the ice and rain. He might as well get accustomed to it now.
4- Why would I care if there is one more or one less car on Route 20? I'm not a diehard tree hugger. And I don't have any intentions of planting grass on my roof either.

There is EVERYTHING "mommas boy" about this. you act like he was left in the middle of nowhere without any way out. Half the people WORLDWIDE have cellphones. What do you think would have happened? He would have died from frostbite? What is the world coming to? Anser the question.. how loud would momma be squalling if the bus had slid off the road with her kid in it?

There's nothing "monna's boy" about this incident. I have yet to hear of anybody's living at PVCC. I'm sure the bus driver was informed that he was to terminate service over the radio. Why didn't he inform his passengers that no bus would be coming to pick them up that evening? Maybe they would have stayed on the bus and returned to civilization. They were quite lucky somebody had a cell phone. This is just another example of how incompetently CTS is run. I have refursed to use it for over a year. What happened to this guy is indicative of an on-going pattern of bad decision-making at the very top. For example, I've noticed that no buses stop at the bus stop right in front of my house for several hours on football game day. Does not going along with this stupidity make me a "momma's boy?" Waaaaa.

Yeah, Lightbulb. I know that boy too. I have talked about him and his situation before. This is no secret. Justice was served quickly. By a new sheriff who revoked his employee's right to the grievance procedure, a procedure the employees had had access to for decades. The boy had already kicked a sheriff's butt in two previous hearings, maybe this new sheriff was scared of the outcome when the boy filed a request for a third grievance hearing? Why were the rights of the good ol' boy deputy revoked so quickly? Was the sheriff running scared? Was he afraid he was about to be publicly humiliated by an insubordinate kicking his butt too?

Interesting, how exactly does he play cop now? Seems like I recall the boy having $4 million lawsuits pending against local coppers and Alexandria coppers for this false accusation already, if we're talking about the same person. Wasn't he a 50+ years old, 220 pound, 5'11" white male with gray hair and mustache? And the suspect was a 20 year old hispanic male, 5'8", 140 pounds, with black hair and no mustache. You think that was good police work, or do you smell something that seems to stinks to high heaven? The good ol' boy gained 80 pounds and aged 30 years by the trial date? Very interesting. Last I heard the coppers are lying against each other now and trying to blame the entire three ring circus on each other. One of the coppers was non-suited recently, but will be added back in soon since the Alexandria coppers are now ready and willing to testify against him.

And a little known fact, the good ol' boy has already been awarded two judgements against two people who accused him in public discussion forums of continuing to play cop. Obviously the accusation of continuing to play cop is not true or the judge wouldn't have awarded him judgement against these two people, right?

OK, so you say maybe the good ol' boy works too hard supporting his family to spend all his time driving aimlessly around Charlottesville wasting gas in a massive SUV equipped with DVD and laptop, stopping every now and then to check in and gossip with folks from his old life while they're trying to work. Massive SUV with a laptop? Are you talking about a city or county cop? Or a civilian? You lost me on that one. Your response is so choppy and vague. Are you saying a cop or a civilian also stops and talks to other cops via laptop? And then repeats what they say? If so, what's wrong with this? If a veteran cop says a fellow cop should have been fired 20 years ago for drunk driving and endangering the lives of civilians, is this not fact when the circumstances were indeed true? Wouldn't repeating it be an accurate and true fact? You seem to have a major problem with veteran city and county cops talking to somebody. And this somebody repeating what's told to them. Why is this? Do you know how many cops are counting their days until retirement when they can finally get out of the mess law enforcement has become? If you are a civilian you should care. If you are a rookie rambo cop, you already know I suspect. And this would explain much of your response above. If a cop is "working", does this cop have to sit around and voluntarily talk to anybody about internal matters in the police departments? The answer is obviously a real big NO, right? It sure doesn't seem like the person has ever given them up name, does it? This would be as bad as sharing private e-mail between two parties.

I thank you for the raise, but even I think $250,000 a year is a bit high. I do however think the new officers deserve more $15.50 an hour. You got a little upset there sick. You love knocking other people for their grammer and spelling, but if some throws a dig your way you go ballistic. I'm not sure what grievance your talking about, deputies have no grievance. They serve at the pleasure of the sheriff. Maybe that department has a policy I am unaware of.
Your right, police departments are a customer service industries. The problem is some people don't realize what that service is. It maybe helping a victim, giving information, or arresting a suspect. The problem with police work is that the service doesn't always mean making everybody happy. I can think of several things officers have done to help people that have nothing to do with law enforcement. They're just happy to help. That's customer service.
I think student2townie has answered some of the other stuff properly. I would love to have that persons name so I can ask him about the officer that couldn't put gas in the car. You wrote you would put me in touch with him, so give me the intials and the department. Everybody can read it so put up or shut up. I'm sure you'll find some way not to. Like give me your name and I'll have him call you. Good one! You need to relax, your gonna have a stroke dude.

Do you know the difference between sarcasm and getting upset? You would think a normal intelligent person could have seen the sarcasm when I mentioned buying your civilian clothing for you and giving you free high speed Internet service.

You're right, I won't put up or shut up. I would never give you the initials now. Because curiosity is now killing you. And because you have dared me to prove my statement. This is pretty much like asking me to give up my 4th Amendment rights and submit to DNA testing to prove my innocence. There, I found a way out of it. :)

Lightbulb has been duped too.

OK Lightbulb, as a citizen-activist and since Longo wasn't here when any of this took place (Longo probably knows nothing about it even though he did review personnel matters of each employee for the previous two years when he took over), why not start with Miller yourself? Ask Miller if he knows of any cop, city or county, that the then commonwealth attorney was speaking of when he said he would not use the cop's testimony in future criminal cases. See what type of answer you get. If Miller should say yes, ask him what position the cop was put in when this cop's credibility had been reduced to zero. Ask Miller what position the person is currently in. Ask Miller what the total of salary and benefits this officer currently receives is. Ask Miller what the monthly amount of this person's retirement will be when he retires in a few years. More importantly, if Miller should answer yes, ask him why he feels the employee was kept on payroll. Report back to us.

On second thought, cancel that suggestion. As a citizen-activist you have no right to see an employee's personnel folder, and Miller can not discuss the contents of the folders with you. No civilian can take these matters into their own hands and investigate them. Pretty frustrating, isn't it?

Didn't we have a local cop totally lose control of his emotions and do something stupid not long ago? I've had a brain fart all day and can't remember who it or where it was. I casn't even remember what it was about. Well, anyhow, this cop in this link reminds me of him.... whoever it was. :)

http://www.badcopnews.com/2008/03/04/nutcase-sharpsburg-north-carolina-p...

high school students have every right to complain because we have no choice but to use the same things adults use, such as buses. complain away. we're people too.