Port Authority driver in Pittsburgh attacked over face mask issue released from hospital

PITTSBURGH — Channel 11 News learned that the Port Authority bus driver who police said was attacked while doing her job, was released from the hospital and is now at home recovering from her injuries.

According to court documents, David Moore, 28, was charged with aggravated assault and terroristic threats in relation to the incident that took place at the corner of Fifth Avenue and Atwood Street on Monday just before 7 a.m.

Police said Moore took a mask out of his pocket when he was asked to put one on but started walking down the bus aisle without wearing it. The driver, a woman, asked him to put it on and he responded that he was going to kill her.

Documents said he then reached around the plexiglass divider and punched the driver with a closed fist multiple times in the face. Another passenger jumped in and tried to pull Moore away. Moore then turned, hit that passenger in the face and threw him to the ground.

Moore continued the attack, according to court papers, kicking and stomping on the passenger’s head. Moore then got off the bus and continued to threaten the driver until police arrived at the scene.

The Port Authority spokesperson, Adam Brandolph issued a statement saying in part, “We are shocked, saddened, and frankly angry that an individual would attack one of our employees for simply doing her job serving the public during a pandemic. Our operators ask riders who are boarding our vehicles to cover their nose and mouth. It has been standard protocol here in Pittsburgh and across the country for several months.”

Channel 11 News also reached out to the bus drivers’ union. They have no comment currently as it’s an ongoing matter. Right now, we are still working to find out the condition of the passenger.

Wendy Frankle said she saw the police activity shortly after the incident.

“There was police cars sitting up here because I get off across the street and there were police cars sitting up here and a bunch of buses, said Frankle.

Frankle rides the bus to and from work every day. She was shocked to hear what happened.

“It was kind of scary thinking about that,” said Frankle. “I’ve seen my bus driver tell people he’s not going to open up the door and let them on unless they were wearing a mask.”