Man with knife taken off Harford school bus

December 06, 2007|By Madison Park

A Harford County man wearing black leather clothing and a black wig and carrying a bag containing a kitchen knife boarded a school bus yesterday morning and rode with students to Joppatowne High, authorities said.

Jeffrey Cerrone, 26, of the 1500 block of Harford Square Drive in Edgewood was arrested upon arrival at the school, said Sgt. Christina Presberry, spokeswoman for the Harford County Sheriff's Office. No one was injured, she said, adding that the suspect took a seat and did not interact with any of the nearly 30 students on the bus during the trip.

Cerrone was charged with possession of a knife and trespassing, and taken to the Harford County Detention Center, where he was being held yesterday in lieu of $15,000 bond.

About 7 a.m., a man boarded the bus along with several students at a bus stop on Harford Square Drive, Presberry said. Realizing the man was not a student, the driver decided to proceed to the school rather than confront the man and risk an altercation, said Don Morrison, Harford County schools spokesman. She called school authorities en route.

When the bus arrived, the students got off without incident. A school resource officer searched the suspect and found the knife protruding from one of the two grocery bags in his possession.

Joppatowne High officials said they planned to send a letter home with students yesterday informing parents about the incident.

Morrison said protocol dictates that a school bus driver's reaction to an unauthorized boarding should be handled on a "case by case basis." He said the driver, who was not identified, acted properly in yesterday's incident.

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