Woman Hit By Cleveland Bus Driver Talks to TJMS

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Read full transcript below.

Click here to hear audio of the interview.

 

TJ:  Alright, let’s go to our New York studios and go inside her story with Jackie Reid.  Good morning from Birmingham, Alabama, Jackie.

JR: Good morning.  I wish I was there, Tom.  Now listen, by now many of us have seen or heard of Shi’dea Lane.  She’s the 25 year old woman that was punched by an angry male bus driver.  Now that moment has become the uppercut that people cannot stop talking about and spawned a heated debate, Tom.  On one side there are those who actually think she deserved to be hit.  And then there are those who believe that a man should never hit a woman no matter what.  Tom, I’m going inside her story with Shi’dea Lane.  Good morning, Shi’dea.

SL:  Hi, how are you?

JR:  Hi.

SL:  Thank you.  Hi.

JR:  Now listen, we talked about this yesterday.  A lot of folks out there saying that you deserved to be hit.  A lot of negative things out there on the Internet said about you.  How do you respond to all of this?  How are you dealing with all that, those negative comments?

SL:  Well, actually it’s been a lot of negativity like in my life as far as what they’re saying about me right now.  And it just, it kind of breaks my heart because that’s not the type of person that I am.  And they haven’t really seen the videos before things had went on.  And I just feel like it was very hurtful and very humiliating, especially for my four year old daughter to see something like that on the TV about her mother.  So it really hurts.

SW:  What happened?

TJ:  Yeah, tell us what happened?

JR:  Yeah, what happened?

SL: Well, as soon as I got on the bus he stereotyped me and misjudged me and said, hoe, you don’t have any money.  And it was like very disrespectful.

JAY:  The bus driver said that to you?

SL:  Yes, he did.  And …

JAY:  The minute you got on the bus?

SL:  Before, well, I got, yeah, when I got on the bus I told him I had to look for my money.  And I said, just hold on a minute, I got it.  And he said, oh, ho’ you don’t got no money.  And I said, huh?  You know?

TJ:  And then what happened?

SL:  And then it just, like I told him I had some money and he was being very disrespectful and was calling me names and stereotyping me and misjudging me before he even knew I had money.  I paid him.  And he was still driving the bus at this time.  So I end up paying him, because I found the money in my pocket and I paid him.  And he was still was disrespecting me and calling me names.  

TJ:  And what were you saying back to him?

SL:  I was saying things back to him because I felt like I was supposed to stand up for myself.  I have been a victim …

TJ:  What were you saying?

SW:  Finger on the button.

SL:  I was saying …

JR:  So he called you a ho’, you called him what?  Or what did you say to him in response to all of what he was saying?

SL:  When he called me, when he called me a ho’, I said, are you talking mess?  Because I just couldn’t believe what I was hearing from a man that didn’t even have a clue who I was.  And misjudge me and I had money.  So, I …

JAY:  Were you drinking that day?

SL:  … was defending myself.  I never was drinking that day.  I was on my way to work.  I never …

JR:  Did you hit him at all?

SL:  I never hit him.

SW:  Did you spit?

SL:  I hit him after he physically attacked me.  Yes, I did.  After he physically attacked me.

JR:  After he, so you’re arguing back and forth, like it’s a situation that many people have been in where someone says something to you and you say something back.

SL:  Exactly.

SW:  Now the report says that you spit on him?  Is that true?

JR:  Okay, and then he was the first one to throw a blow, according to you.  Is that true, Shi’dea?

SL:  Yes, he was the first one to throw a blow.

JAY:  He hit you while driving the bus?

SL:  No, he did not hit me while driving the bus.

JR:  No, he stopped.

TJ:  What about the reports that you spit on him?

SL:  I never spit on that man.

SW:  So you never …

SL:  I never spit on that man.

SW:  You never, you didn’t kick …

SL:  Out of anything … out of anything I’ve been in a lot of situations that was, you know, not good, but I’ve never spit on anyone.  And I’ve never spit on that man.

SW:  Because the report …

JR:  Because you look at the video he gets up out of his seat and comes to you and then that’s when he just hits you.  And he says, if you want to act like a man he’s going to treat you like a man.

SL:  Yes, ma’am.

JR:  Why did he do that?  What provoked him to stop driving the bus and go from arguing with you to come over and hit you?

SL:  Honestly I felt like the conversation that we were having was really …

JAY:  It didn’t seem like a conversation.

SL:  He was really getting more upset—say that again?

JAY:  It didn’t seem like a conversation.  It seemed like you were, he was trying to drive the bus and you were just, why didn’t you stop, why weren’t you big enough to stop and go sit down?  And report him later?

SL:  Because …

JR:  Well, Jay, you know what though, we’ve all been in situations where we should’ve been a bigger person.

JAY:  I’m, but I’m asking her.  I’m asking her.  I was just asking her.  

SL:  Because, because as a woman, and a mother, and being, uh … a victim of domestic violence.  And for this man to have no clue of who I am and justify my character before he even knew I had any money.

JAY:  Did you ever find your money?  

TJ: You found the money.

SL:  I paid him.  

JR:  Yeah, she did.  And she paid her way.

SW:  But it still went on.

JAY:  Okay, back to the question of what did you say to him that made him stop the bus and hit you?

SL:  Well, actually, the man …

JAY:  What did you say or do to him that made him stop the bus and …

SW:  And say if you’re going to act like a man …

JAY:  …like a man, I’m going to treat you like a man, and hit you.  What happened?

SL:  Okay, well actually … he pushed me first, with his …

JAY:  He pushed you or he hit you?

SL:  He, he pushed me …

JR:  While he was still driving?

SL:  No.  The bus was clearly stopped when all this took place.  

JR:  Okay.

SL:  He pushed me with his elbow.  And then …

JAY:  But, what …

SW:  Wait, wait, wait, let her finish.

SL:  Then I … he pushed me with his elbow, like a get out of my face push.  And I pushed him back and I stood back.  I never spit on that man, and I will honestly say I never spit on him, ever.  

JAY:  Can we get the bus driver …

SL:  And he just …

TJ:  Well, what did you do?

SL:  I don’t know what made him, I don’t know what made him …

SW:  He just snapped.

SL:  … get up and attack me.  But, yeah, he just like he just snapped.  Or I don’t know what was the problem, but he just snapped, and clearly I was standing still not putting my hands on him at all when he stood up.  And he physically attacked me.  And I had, I felt …

JAY:  Well, my question to you, he was sitting, you was standing, why at that one point didn’t you just say I’m going to report him and go sit down?  Why, why didn’t you choose to do that?

SL:  Uh, because, like I said, before, as a mother, and a woman, I was, he misjudged me and the conversation had already had escalated out of proportion.

SW:  Did anyone come to your defense?

JR:  Other people on the bus from what, from watching this video, Shi’dea, when he hit you, there were people who started screaming say, no, no!  Who seemed from what I heard upset that he was hitting you in the way that he was.  Because he hit you and then he threw you down.  What, did people come to your aid?  What happened after that?  After he hit you?

SL:  Yes.  People did come to me and, you know, tried to calm me down and tried to get me to relax.  You know, just trying to keep me calm.  And people did come to my attention and authorities ended up coming, but that’s what happened.

JAY:  Do you still ride the bus?

SW:  Where is the case now?

TJ:  Yeah, are you suing?

JR:  Shi’dea has hired an attorney.  And where are we with things?  Have you sued?  Are you suing the bus company?  Are you suing the city?  Have you heard from them?  Have they issued any kind of an apology?

SL:  Well, actually I saw on the news that RCA was apologizing to me.  So that kind of gives me a little bit, yes, so that gives me a little bit of remorse and it makes me feel a little better as far as they even taking the time out to apologize.  And as me suing anybody I’m trying to take care of the criminal case before I even go any farther.  I haven’t even talked to anybody about suing, or trying to …

JAY:  Do you still ride the bus?

SW:  Yeah, how are you getting back and forth to work?

JAY:  Yeah, do you still ride the bus?  How you getting back and forth?

SL:  I do not ride the bus, and I no longer live in Cleveland, and my aunt gives me a ride to work every day.

JAY:  Alright.

JR:  Yeah, the bus driver has been suspended.  I don’t know if he’s been fired.

SW:  Is that indefinite?

JR:  The last I heard is he’s been suspended.  Don’t know.  Pending an investigation.

SW:  Okay.

JAY:  Whatever you do, don’t make your aunt mad.

JR:  Shi’dea, thank you for being brave enough to share your story.

SL:  Thank you.

JR:  I know it’s difficult.

SW:  Good luck to you and thanks for putting up with that.

TJ: God bless her.

SW:  Really.

TJ:  God bless her.  Man, she can take a punch though.

JAY:  Yes, she can.

JAY:  You got to get the bus driver on, there’s more to this story, Jackie.

TJ:  I’ve never seen anybody take a punch like that.

JR:  No man should hit a woman like that.

 

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