ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – An Albuquerque bus driver was caught on camera in a violent fistfight while on duty along Route 66.
A short cellphone video shows the incident that was never reported to the city. It’s still unknown what exactly led up to the incident, but many people who KRQE News 13 spoke with believe the bus driver is most likely not to blame.
“I’ve been on the bus and I’ve seen the stuff they have to put up with like drunk people on the bus or whatever. You know what? Props to them. They’re not only bus drivers because they’re having to act like police officers also,” an Albuquerque man said.
“I’ve been on the buses, and there have been some very unruly people that the bus driver was trying to protect the other passengers [from] and they’ve gotten into it,” Ericka Nunez said.
The fight happened Tuesday night near Eubank and Central. In the video, a uniformed ABQ Ride driver is seen outside of his bus, wailing on a man, punching him until he is on the ground.
It’s not clear if that man was a passenger or what led up to the fight, but one person who KRQE News 13 spoke with thinks the bus driver did make one mistake.
“I think he has a right to protect himself or his passengers possibly, but he was wrong to leave the seat I think,” another man said.
The city says there was a contracted security guard on the bus during the incident. However, that guard never reported anything to city security.
An investigation into why that was never reported and what led up to the fight is underway. An ABQ Ride spokesman says violent conduct is unacceptable.
The city has not released the name of the bus driver. He is on administrative leave, pending the outcome of the investigation.