Local News

Long Island school bus attendant accused of breaking special-needs child’s arm

RICHARD MASON

Richard Mason is accused of breaking a special-needs child’s arm on a school bus he monitored.

(PIX11) — A Long Island school bus attendant has been accused of breaking a five-year-old special-needs child’s arm Monday, Suffolk County police say.

Authorities say Richard Mason, who works in Commack, was attempting to discipline Connor Shirangi on the bus and say he grabbed the child’s arm and pulled it behind his back, fracturing it. Connor’s mother, Desiree Johnston-Shirangi, told PIX11 doctors told her his injuries were consistent with being tied down and having his airway restricted.

Johnston-Shirangi says her son, who has a form of autism, initially did not reveal what happened when he came off the bus crying. She said Mason told her that her son injured his arm by punching a window, and that he told the other children on the bus not to tell their parents what happened. Her son later revealed to doctors what happened on the bus.

At Mason’s arraignment Thursday, Johnston-Shirangi got into a heated exchange with the his niece, who was there to support her uncle.

Mason fight

Mason’s niece attempted to defend her uncle at his arraignment, exchanging words with Connor Shirangi’s mother.

“He’s not that kind of person. He wouldn’t do something like this,” Mason’s niece said. “I’m so frustrated at this situation.”

Johnston-Shirangi came into the room and confronted Mason’s niece, saying, “I hope he gets the help he needs.”

The argument escalated quickly when Mason’s niece tried to defend her uncle saying neither of them “were on the bus,” so no one knows exactly what happened.

Mason has been charged for third degree assault and acting in a manner to Injure a child.

Web produced by Allison Yang

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