Bus driver's day in court will resume next year

Former bus driver Lenoir Sainfimin says it wasn't his fault the bus he was driving lost control and plunged into a pond. He says the brakes failed.

Sainfimin is fighting a reckless driving citation after a crash on September of 2015.  His school bus was packed with kids when it plunged into a  pond.

Sanfimin sprang into action and was able to get all 27 kids off the bus safely.  Video from the bus shows him behind the wheel minutes before the crash, but it doesn't show the moment of the crash itself.

Hillsborough school officials say portions of the video had water damage.  But Sainfimin's attorney, Ralph Fernandez, believes the video was tampered with -- not once but twice.

At the hearing Friday, a Hillsborough deputy said the bus was checked for mechanical failure but two experts found nothing wrong.  Fernandez fired back, claiming the district basically handed Sainfimin a road hazard to transport kids.

"Were you aware," he asked, "five times within the last year, the breaking system on this bus had collapsed? And were you aware this was a 21-year-old bus with 300,000 miles on it?"

The deputy said she didn't know that information.

Fernandez pointed out the bus had a history of mechanical problems, including issue with the brake system. 

The judge was looking to hear from the two mechanics who inspected the bus, but they were never asked to appear in court.  So everything was put on hold.

The judge says he won't make a decision on this case until he hears from them.

The traffic trial picks up in February.