Only 4-week suspension for bus attack suspect

Only 4-week suspension for bus attack suspect
WALLA WALLA, Wash. -- A violent assault on a teen - and it was all caught on camera. But what's even more shocking than the video is the fact the man accused of the attack is just a week and a half away from getting on a bus - and sitting next to you.

"This guy looked crazy, like he was going to pull a knife or gun or something," said the boy attacked on Valley Transit. “He kept saying something about voices in his head."

Two and a half weeks ago, 30-year-old Robert Kreykenbohm attacked a 13-year-old in what police call an “unprovoked assault” - an assault that has left permanent damage.

“Physically I am fine, but emotionally it's hard,” said the young teen, “and he's (Kreykenbohm) still walking around like nothing happened to him."

Not only is Kreykenbohm out of jail, he’s close to getting on a Walla Walla bus again too.

“Our standard is a one-week suspension. We doubled that to two weeks,” explained Dick Fondahn, general manager for Valley Transit. “After we watched the video and saw the unprovoked nature and the viciousness of the attack, we increased it to four weeks, which is the most we can legally do.”

“It takes my breath away because there's a lot of other kids out there," said Silvia, the victim’s mother.

Other kids riding a bus driven by someone Silvia and Robert say should be fired.

“She was told he was assaulted not once but twice. That's enough time to react to me,” Silvia said. “We had a learning moment from this attack,” said Fondahn. “She didn't believe the attack had happened because she hadn't seen it,” referring to the driver.

The driver, who Valley Transit says has been a model employee up until this point, has been disciplined. The bus system has also changed their policy for assaults.

“Regardless of what you see or hear yourself, you take these concerns seriously. Stop the bus and notify authorities immediately.”

“I wonder what the folks of Walla Walla think about that,” asked Robert, the victim’s father.

Kreykenbohm will answer for his fourth-degree assault charges later this month; in the meantime, he's been released. The fact he'll soon be able to ride a Valley Transit bus sickens Silvia as a mother and angers Robert as a father.

“They are going to let him on the bus in a week and a half. Obviously there's a flaw and I hope they fix it,” said Robert.