FOX 8 EXCLUSIVE: Passenger Talks About RTA Bus Driver Fight

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CLEVELAND, Ohio-  Michael Evans, Jr. of Cleveland said he was on his way to his mother’s house Saturday on board RTA bus no. 30, taking his children to their grandmother’s when he became involved in a confrontation with bus driver, Chaz Seals.

Video first aired by FOX 8 News on Tuesday shows Evans moving toward the front of the bus and standing near the doorway as it approached a stop near East 156th and Lakeshore.

Evans said his stop was next.

As a woman with a baby stroller entered the bus, Seals asked Evans to move back to give her more room.

On the video he is overheard making the request not once, but three times.

Each time Evans refused, insisting she had enough room to get past him.

Evans spoke exclusively to FOX 8 News on Wednesday saying he got mad because the bus driver raised his voice.

“There was enough room for this girl to get by with her stroller period, point blank, it was enough room for her to get by. I’m trying to get off the bus with my children you know, that was my whole thing," said Evans.

On the video, Seals is seen standing up from his driver’s seat and calling RTA police to report that he has a violent passenger as Evans' temper flares.

Evans is seen taking off his coat and handing it to one of his children as the confrontation escalates.

“It seemed to me like he was getting agitated just like i was so if he tried anything I wanted to be prepared,” said Evans.

When asked if it was possible the driver felt threatened by him, Evans told FOX 8, “I don’t know what he felt. I know what I felt and when he stood up I felt threatened by him.”

As the two men continue to exchange words, Seals is overheard telling Evans to get off the bus. Evans is then seen approaching Seals one more time, pointing his finger in the driver’s face and the confrontation becomes physical.

“When asked if he touched Seals when he put his finger in his face, Evans said, “No, I did not touch him. I was close to his face but I did not touch him.”

He insisted Seals grabbed him first; then after the two men struggled for a few minutes, Evans said the driver “sucker-punched” him as he was getting off the bus.

Evans said he turned around to make sure his children were behind him as he was getting off the bus and that’s when he was punched.

RTA told Fox 8 News on Tuesday that the driver followed protocol which requires them to stop the bus, call police, and try to get other passengers off of the bus safely if there was a violent passenger on board.

Evans also spoke with RTA investigators on Wednesday. They told Fox 8 he was cooperative with them.

But after viewing the unedited bus video with FOX 8 News, Evans admitted that he could have handled the situation differently.

“Looking back I wish that I would have not pointed my finger at his face like that and that I just would have said forget him when he stood up,” said Evans.

“I should have held my control better than that, especially with my children there, you know. Once I saw him getting irritated, instead of taking off my coat, I should have got off the bus right then and there,” he continued.

“What I think I’m wrong about is pointing my finger at his face and just not getting off the bus when I saw him stand up. That’s what I think I was wrong about. As far as me telling him not to be yelling at me, I feel I have every right,” said Evans.

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10 comments

  • Ivan

    Just another disrespectful ignorant ghetto mutant – no surprise in Cleveland. He should be sentenced to at least a year in prison.

  • jason

    Real sporty way to act in front of your children Evans. I’m sure you did it before and will do it again.

  • carl

    Got my vote.

    At least a year maybe two because he will do it again there’s no question about it and the next time it might not turn out like it did this time he was “LUCKY”.
    .
    He has no “RESPECT” for anyone.

    You can tell he was looking for trouble just by standing there waiting on someone to bump him.

    I don’t see anyone else standing up front like he was.

    i’am glad i don’t work for the bus company that would not happen on my bus you sit your A$$ down.

    I would be fired in a couple days not long enough to get a weeks pay.

    lol

    It’s real sad anymore you cant go anywhere without running into trouble and what’s so bad it’s these young people.

    (Now don’t fly off the handle not all young people)

    They just don’t care.

    It’s very simple “The process of elimination” and we all know what i’am talking about.

    All this talking is getting “OLD” and “NOWHERE”.

    • rin

      I agree. My first thought was “where are his manners?” How rude of HIM not to step aside to make more room for the woman and her baby to get by. Selflish! It’s not like he wasn’t going to be allowed to get out after she got in. Just rude and ungentleman like. He only thinks he’s wrong for sticking his finger in the bus drivers face. It started way back at him not liking to be told what to do. Period. The bus driver asked him to move and he flat out refused. Whether he thought there was enough room or not, I agree with Janice here, most decent people and especially a true gentleman, would step aside and help the woman get up and on the bus!.

  • CL A

    Why wasn’t he exiting at the rear or second door? The first door is for entering/paying riders. Second is for exiting. I’m not an RTA driver, but perhaps this is the policy RTA needs to enforce. I’m glad the bus driver followed protocol…

  • Maria

    Alright not to excuse ignorance, but why do these young ladies think they have a right to board a bus with a stroller in the down position. they are rude for that action AND drivers should take a better stand at observing this rule first. Mr. Evans saw what happened before with an RTA drivers reaction to a passenger and probably thought, not me.?

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