Police: School bus driver provides access for son to rape student

HOLLAND PATENT, N.Y. (WKTV) - State Police have arrested the son of a Holland Patent school bus driver and charged him with the rape of a student. The bus driver has been charged with endangering the welfare of a child. It is alleged that the bus driver provided his son with access to the sixteen year old victim.

Investigators say 23-year-old Michael Newland Jr. has been charged with rape. His father, 44-year-old Michael Newland Sr., was the victim's bus driver and, according to authorities, provided access and opportunity for his son to have contact with the victim.

Police say the driver kept the student on the bus past her scheduled stop. He then went off his route to visit with Michael Jr. It is alleged that he subsequently provided the son's cell phone number to the student. Police say, later the same day the younger Newland engaged in sexual activities with the victim.

On October 27, Michael Newland Jr. was charged with rape and criminal sexual act. He was arraigned in the Town of Trenton court and sent to the Oneida County Jail on $15,000 cash bail.

Police say on November 20, Michael Newland Sr. was issued an appearance ticket charging him with endangering the welfare of a child. He will answer to the charges in the Town of Trenton court on December 7.

In a separate case, police say that, during the investigation, another female student at Holland Patent came forward with allegations of sexual abuse against the elder Newland. In the second incident, it is alleged that, in 2009, at the Newland home in the Town of Ohio, Michael Newland Sr., subjected the victim to sexual contact with himself. It is also reported that the senior Newland provided his son the opportunity to meet with the second victim. Mr. Newland Sr. was the victim’s school bus driver.

On November 20, Michael Newland Sr. was ticketed and charged with one count of sexual abuse and one count of endangering the welfare of a child. He will answer to those charges, regarding this second case, in the Town of Ohio court on November 23.

Holland Patent Schools Superintendent Kathleen Davis released the following statement to NEWSChannel 2 Sunday morning :

"The Holland Patent Central School District has a responsibility to ensure the safety of all of our students. Our transportation has been top notch over the years. Mr. Newland no longer works for the district. If any parents have any concerns or questions, they can feel free to contact me directly at the district offices, especially in regards to this situation."

Davis said that Michael Newland worked for the district for over five years. She added, "We will do whatever we can to cooperate with the police."

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