Bus driver charged with rape of mentally disabled

BELLEFONTE — Justin Jackson, 24, of Baltimore, Md., formerly of State College, was arraigned Tuesday or charges he raped a mentally disabled girl.

According to the Centre County district attorney’s office:

Jackson was a bus driver for the victim who attended an after-school program for children with autism. He deliberately switched the victim from being the first child off his bus to the last child off his van, and instead of taking her home on May 6, 2016, he took her to the parking lot of an abandoned building and sexually assaulted her in the back of the van.

He was supposed to drive the victim every other week but he switched with another driver to drive again the next week, and on May 9, he again raped the victim, after keeping her on the van until last and taking her to a place to assault her.

He told her he would not stop until someone contacted him.

His supervisor later contacted him because the victim’s mother was worried her daughter wasn’t home yet. The driver said he had taken a “wrong turn.” He told the victim to make things up to explain why she was arriving home late.

The state police at Rockview investigated, and the charges against Jackson include two counts of sexual assault, two counts of aggravated indecent assault, institutional sexual assault of a minor, one count of corruption of minors, nine counts of unlawful contact with a minor, and two counts of indecent assault.

Bail was set at $50,000 and the defendant immediately posted it. The preliminary hearing is scheduled for Wednesday.

The district attorney’s office announced it will seek an increase in the bail.