A group of five students from Gibsons are apologizing this week after throwing eggs, vegetables and fruit at a transit bus driving in Langdale March 28.
"We know now that it was not the right thing to do and we know that we should have thought about it before we did it," said a letter of apology written by the youth. "If we thought before we did it, maybe we would have realized that our decision that night would affect so many people, for example the bus driver, passengers at the time, people who needed to catch the bus from Langdale and had their stops taken away. For these reasons we would like to apologize to the people of Gibsons, B.C. Transit, RCMP, our parents and some counsellors." The letter of apology was the final step in a restorative justice circle the youth and transit officials were involved in with the Sunshine Coast RCMP.
"I think the justice circle is a good way to go when the event is out of character, and I think in this case it was," said Sunshine Coast Regional District manager of transit services Brian Sagman.
The justice circle keeps offenders out of court and allows them to meet the people they have committed a crime against.
"The idea is the victims are there with the people who did the deeds and then there is a face to what they did," Sagman said.
The youth met with transit officials and RCMP members on two occasions. Sagman feels the students learned a lot about the danger of throwing food at buses.
"It's a safety issue. For one thing, had this happened when it was colder outside, things like eggs thrown at the windshield freeze and make it hard to see. It could have startled the driver causing him to stop suddenly or swerve, throwing passengers out of their seats. And those windows can shatter. There is always a chance of injury or losing control," Sagman said.
Sagman thanks the RCMP for their door-to-door search that turned up the young offenders and hopes the recent trend of kids throwing things at buses is over now. The youth in Gibsons who were throwing rocks at buses earlier this year have not yet been apprehended.
If you have information about this or other local crimes, you can contact the Sunshine Coast RCMP at 604-885-2266.