Bus driver allegedly assaults man trying to use reduced fare card

Posted: Updated:
By Mike Gertzman By Mike Gertzman
Todd Allen Shields By Andrew Michalscheck Todd Allen Shields By Andrew Michalscheck

PHOENIX -- A Phoenix bus driver was arrested this week after allegedly assaulting a man who tried to use a reduced fare card.

Police said just before noon on Friday a 21-year-old man boarded a bus near 19th Avenue and Montebello.

The man then presented the reduced fare card, which is for people 18 years old or younger, to the driver, 45-year-old Todd Allen Shields.

Shields told the man he appeared to be older than 18, and the two reportedly exchanged words.

Police said Shields proceeded to throw the man off the bus and assault him. He also broke the man’s cell phone.

Officers were called to the scene and determined that Shields had assaulted the man as he tried to board the bus.

Shields was subsequently arrested on charges of assault, disorderly conduct and criminal damage.

--Veolia statement regarding bus driver altercation:

Veolia Transportation provides bus services under contract to the City of Phoenix.

On Friday, June 14, 2013 a Veolia Transportation employee who is a bus driver was involved in an altercation with a passenger aboard his bus.

This altercation was related to fare collection and resulted in the arrest of the bus driver.

We are fully investigating this matter as we do any instance of possible misconduct.  The driver is on investigative leave pending the completion and outcome of our formal investigation. 

Employees who violate our policies are subject to disciplinary action, which can, if warranted, include termination of employment.

Safety for our passengers and our employees is Veolia’s number one priority and drivers are trained to follow specific procedures in dealing with passengers and fare issues.