Stolen South Euclid-Lyndhurst school bus found in snow, mud 20 miles away

LYNDHURST, Ohio-- Police are investigating after a South Euclid-Lyndhurst school bus was stolen from the bus garage and dumped about 20 miles away in Geauga County.

The Geauga County Sheriff’s Office responded to Leader Road in Hambden Township around 10 a.m. on Dec. 23 after a neighbor reported seeing the bus in a field at the rear of Leader’s Mobile Home Park.

A police report stated bus No. 20 was buried up to its axles in snow and mud, and had to be towed out.

“I opened up the blind on the window and I looked out there, and I just seen a school bus sitting back there,” said neighbor Kelly Sample. “Maybe some kids stole it, went out joyriding. I have no idea how they got it from there to here.”

Another neighbor said he saw the bus speed by his home down a service road, but by the time he walked down to it to see if anyone was hurt, the bus was empty.

A police report stated the bus door was open and the keys were left inside. The bus driver told investigators he parked the bus at the bus garage on Mayfield Road around 10 p.m. on Dec. 22, following a run. He said he put the keys in the bus office, locked up and left.

Police said the office did not appear to be broken into and its alarm never sounded. They have not yet identified suspects, but the bus was processed for evidence.

A spokesman for the South Euclid-Lyndhurst City School District said in a statement that the bus was thoroughly inspected and there were no signs of damage.