Newark police chief caught on camera blowing school bus stop sign


Video has surfaced of the Newark Police Chief blowing through a school bus stop sign. Police say the chief thought what he was doing was legal.

Chief Barry Connell was responding to help his officers who were involved in a foot pursuit and struggle with a wanted felon.

The incident happened on October 10 and Patty Hughes was behind the wheel of the bus in question. Her camera captured footage as a student exited.

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"She was on the last step and I saw out of the corner of my eye this cop go right by. It was an unmarked cruiser. You could see the lights in the back window. No siren, and I beeped at him and he slowed down at the tracks but then kept going. I was like, 'Really?'" said Hughes.

She took her concern to Newark Police.

"I told him my concern, I told him I had a video. He basically said he's not interested in seeing the video. And he kept telling me, 'Oh we can do that. As long as we use due diligence.' I said, 'Okay, let's go with that argument. How do you have due diligence when you're coming from behind a 60-foot long vehicle where you can't see the front end of that?' Where's their due diligence?"

A police spokesperson says Connell believed emergency vehicles were allowed to pass school bus stop signs with caution.

After this incident, they say they know that's not the case.

The explanation doesn't wash with Hughes.

"As they tell every defendant, ignorance of the law is no excuse."

Newark police says all of its officers have been retrained on this. Hughes says that's a good start.

She says she'd also like to see the Chief charged as any other driver would be.

10TV asked to speak to Chief Connell, or anyone from Newark Police, on camera.

They did not make themselves available.

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