South Florida bus driver hailed as a hero after gunman opened fire on board, killing 2
FORT LAUDERDALE, Florida. – A bus driver is being hailed as a hero for driving into the parking lot of Fort Lauderdale police headquarters after a gunman opened fire on the bus, killing two passengers.
The shooting erupted just after 2:30 p.m. Thursday as the Broward County bus was traveling on a busy road near downtown Fort Lauderdale, police said.
When the driver heard gunshots, police say she forced her way into a turning lane and then pulled over to police headquarters. Officers rushed after hearing the commotion and the suspected shooter got off the bus and surrendered, police said.
“The bus driver in this particular case, his quick actions, I’m sure, saved lives,” acting police chief Luis Alvarez said at a news conference on Thursday. “So kudos to her. She deserves to be applauded for her actions.”
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Investigators said when shots rang out the bus driver realized the vehicle was ‘pinned down’ and unable to cross Broward Boulevard, so she steered around a blocking car and drove off. is shoving his way across the road, jumping frantically over the median and into oncoming traffic to the east, WSVN Reports.
“It’s a hard thing to do. Few people would have behaved like that bus driver and to get to the police station,” Alvarez said.
Surveillance video stills showing the bus driving through oncoming traffic in order to get to the police station more quickly. (Courtesy of WSVN)
Surveillance video captured the bus as the driver weaved through traffic and dodged cars, colliding with an SUV and a taxi before he could pull into the police station parking lot.
Moments later, the shooter, identified as 34-year-old Jamal Meyers, got off the bus and surrendered.
Investigators said they still don’t know the motive.
One person died on the bus after being shot and the second victim died after being rushed to a nearby hospital, Fort Lauderdale Fire Relief Battalion Chief Stephen Gollan told WSVN.
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Another bus driver was in critical condition, while a fourth was seriously injured, officials said.
Three other people were treated at the scene for minor injuries sustained when the bus hit their vehicles.
(Broward Sheriff’s Office)
Meyers faces charges of murder, attempted murder, possession of a weapon by a convicted felon and breach of probation. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement considers the man to be a serious habitual criminal who has had numerous encounters with the justice system since 2003.
According to court records, Meyers was convicted in 2021 of 10 crimes committed between 2017 and 2019. Each conviction carried concurrent three-year sentences, so he only served five months in state prison after being credited with more than 800 days awaiting trial. . He was released on January 8.
It was not immediately known whether Meyers had an attorney to speak on his behalf.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.