Hillsborough County school bus driver who crashed into pond ruled not guilty

Posted at 11:15 AM, Mar 31, 2017
and last updated 2017-03-31 16:28:14-04

Lenoir Sainfimin, the Hillsborough County school bus driver that crashed into a pond in Odessa with kids aboard has been ruled not guilty.

RELATED: School bus overturns in pond in Odessa; 28 Mary E. Bryant Elementary students on board, all safe

The school bus with children on board overturned in 2015 near Nine Eagle Drive and Kingsmill Road in Odessa.

The bus was transporting students from Mary E. Bryant Elementary School in Tampa. The students managed to get out safely.

Some students were treated for minor cuts and bruises on their hands, legs and heads.

Witnesses said the bus driver, Lenoir Sainfimin, played a big role by staying on the bus and helping get the kids to safety.

The county severed ties with him after he was charged with careless driving in the incident.

Since then, an investigation was launched to find the cause of the crash, and whether or not the brakes failed.

"The kids are our national treasure and it's incredible when we talk about roads and bridges that our outdated but what carried the national treasure is also in need of funding.  It's all about Improper funding," Sainfimin's attorney Ralph Fernandez said.

RELATED: EXCLUSIVE: School bus driver who drove into pond with kids aboard says brakes failed him

The judge overseeing the case ruled Sainfimin not guilty Friday morning due to a lack of evidence.