bus goes off I-10 in Ariz. when passenger attacks driver

TONOPAH, Ariz. — A passenger attacked
the driver of a Greyhound bus,
causing a crash on Interstate 10 in
western Arizona that left 24 people
injured, state police said. Passengers
and law enforcement officials are hailing the driver as a
hero after he fended off the attacks, CBS affiliate KPHO reported.

The Dallas-bound bus was heading east from Los Angeles when the
crash occurred near Tonopah shortly
before 2 a.m. Thursday.

The bus
crossed the highway median, but came to a stop before entering westbound
traffic when other passengers restrained the man who had been pummeling the
driver, the Arizona Department of Public
Safety said.

The bus
remained upright and none of the 24 people taken to hospitals had
life-threatening injuries, the DPS said.

“(The driver) did a
tremendous job,” passenger Gregory Fort of Oakland, Calif., told KPHO.
“I drive this route every week. The guy was beating him uncontrollably,
hitting him in the face, head. There is nothing anyone could have done better.
He deserves a merit for handling bus the way he did.”

“The passengers descended on [the attacker],” DPS spokesman Bart Graves told The Associated Press.

Graves said the attacker reportedly
was hallucinating and indicated he wanted to get off the bus. The man was taken to a hospital for a
drug-induced condition, Graves said.

The injuries included a broken sternum
suffered by one of the passengers who helped restrain the attacker, said DPS
Officer Carrick Cook, another DPS spokesman.

The alleged attacker and a female
companion got off the bus when it
stopped and ran off into the desert, but he was arrested when they returned 30
minutes later, the DPS said.

Maquel Donyel Morris, 25, of Los
Angeles will be booked into jail on suspicion of numerous counts of
endangerment, assault and aggravated assault, the DPS said.

Greyhound spokeswoman Alexandra
Pedrini said the bus was carrying 41
passengers, plus the driver.

A relief bus
was sent to the accident scene to take the nearly 20 uninjured passengers to
Phoenix so they could continue to their final destinations, she said.

Westbound lanes of I-10 were closed
for 30 minutes so helicopters could land.

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