BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — Four passengers who witnessed a deadly shooting onboard a Greyhound bus while traveling through Kern County earlier this year filed a lawsuit on Thursday. The suit, filed in Kern County Superior Court, asks for compensatory damages from the nationwide bus carrier.
The complaint was filed by the national law firm of Baum Hedlund Aristei & Goldman on behalf of plaintiffs Sarah Crist, Mark Grabban, Yashirah Foy, and Efrain Zabaleta Lopez, Sr.
The complaint accuses defendants Greyhound Lines Inc. of Dallas, Texas, and sister company First Group America Inc. of Cincinnati, Ohio, of negligence for allowing a belligerent man with a loaded firearm to board a Greyhound bus transporting dozens of passengers between Los Angeles and San Francisco. The assailant opened fire on the bus, killing one person and injuring many others, including the plaintiffs.
Part of the plaintiffs' recount of the incident states that the assailant boarded the bus showing signs of being mentally unstable and possibly under the influence, or both, and in possession of a loaded firearm. When he began firing shots, they say that the Greyhound driver remained unaware of the situation until after the man was thrown off the bus, having already shot multiple people.
According to the complaint, the plaintiffs believe the tragic incident could have been prevented if Greyhound had implemented well-known and accepted methods to provide their passengers with the safety and security from criminal attack to which they are entitled. As a result, they claimed to have suffered severe emotional trauma that will continue to negatively impact their lives.
In a statement presented by the attorneys, they share that “Greyhound has not only failed to adequately screen passengers before boarding their buses, they have also failed to inform their passengers that they could be victimized by violent criminal attacks during bus transit. We hope this litigation will persuade Greyhound to address these glaring safety issues before another incident results in injuries or the loss of life.”