Charges: Man who hit girl getting off bus in Minneapolis was impaired by drugs, alcohol

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A Brooklyn Park, Minnesota man is charged with hitting an 11-year-old girl with his car as she got off the school bus in Minneapolis, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman announced Thursday.

Gregory Garth, 60, was charged on July 18 with one count of criminal vehicular operation while under the influence of alcohol and one count of criminal vehicular operation while under the influence of drugs.

On the afternoon of May 3, 11-year-old Shianne Dean got off her school bus at Penn Avenue North near 23rd Avenue. As she was crossing Penn Avenue, Garth drove his Saturn around the bus on the left and hit her. She was thrown against the car windshield and landed in the middle of the street.  

The bus driver let Dean out at a temporary bus stop because construction hindered the usual bus stop. As a result, the bus driver did not activate the school bus stop arm or flashing lights, the charges say. 

Garth stopped and remained on scene. Officers spoke with Garth and conducted field sobriety tests, on which he performed poorly. Officers took him to the Hennepin County Medical Center for a blood draw and portable breath test. 

The charges say Garth tested positive for cocaine and THC and had a blood alcohol content of 0.0777. 

Dean was critically injured in the crash. She was transferred from North Memorial to Gillette Children’s Hospital in July. She still has a feeding tube in her stomach and is expected to suffer permanent memory loss and permanent weakness on her left side.