AVON – An Avon man is facing felony charges after allegedly taking a school bus from a Pennsylvania bus company and driving it back to his home in Avon, reports the Livingston County Sheriff’s Office.
Justin M. Preedom, 30, was arrested Aug. 24 and charged with second-degree criminal possession of stolen property, a Class C felony, as the value of the bus exceeded $50,000.
Preedom may also face charges in Pennsylvania, where the investigation is continuing.
The investigation began after sheriff’s deputies received a complaint of a “suspicious condition” at about 7:35 a.m. Aug. 24 and responded to an address on East Avon-Lima Road. The complaint reported that a school bus with Pennsylvania license plates was on the property and the caller did not know why it was there, the Sheriff’s Office said.
Investigating deputies contacted the owner of the bus company in Sarver, Pa., who confirmed that the 66-passenger bus had been stolen and that there was no legitimate reason for it to be in Avon, the Sheriff’s Office said.
Further investigation revealed that Preedom had been in Pennsylvania and allegedly stole the bus to drive back to his home in Avon, the Sheriff’s Office said.
Sarver, in Butler County, Pa., is about 30 miles northeast of Pittsburgh, and around 275 miles from Avon.
Livingston County sheriff’s investigators are continuing to work with law enforcement in Pennsylvania where there is a potential for further charges, the Sheriff’s Office said.
Preedom was turned over to Central Booking deputies at the Livingston County Jail for processing and pre-arraignment detention. The offenses did qualify for pre-arraignment detention under the state Justice Reform Act, however, a justice may not set bail.
Preedom was later arraigned at Livingston County Centralized Arraignment Part at Livingston County Jail before town of North Dansville Justice David Werth and released on his own recognizance.
The incident was investigated by members of the Sheriff’s Office Patrol Division, Criminal Investigations Division and Forensic Indentification Unit.