Mother demands answers from CMS after son with autism dropped off nearly 18 miles from home

A teenage boy with autism was supposed to be dropped off near his house after school. Instead, the school bus driver dropped him off 18 miles away near Charlotte Douglas Airport.

His mother told Channel 9′s Erika Jackson that while Charlotte-Mecklenburg School leaders apologized for the incident, that didn’t feel like enough.

In many ways, Ziggy Miller is your typical 15-year-old boy. He likes to play videos games and enjoys anime.

But unlike many high school freshmen at Harding University High School, Ziggy Miller lives with autism amongst other health issues.

“He has to be redirected a lot. He loses focus often. And he also has an auditory processing disorder,” Cheri Miller, Ziggy Miller’s mother said.

Cheri Miller said Ziggy Miller doesn’t like change or disruptions, which is why it was a big deal when he agreed to ride the school bus from his new home in north Mecklenburg County.

“He has an a.m. bus and a p.m. bus. Which we figured would be confusing for him considering his condition,” Cheri Miller said.

Cheri said there were no bumps in the road during Ziggy’s first-morning bus ride in December; however, he hit a roadblock after school.

Cheri told Channel 9 that Ziggy’s counselor gave him the wrong bus number when he was heading home.

“The driver says, ‘Well, I don’t have a stop there so you can either get off at this stop or the next stop.’ It was over by Charlotte Douglas Airport,” Cheri Miller said.

She said Ziggy’s older sister picked him up from McGarry Trail. That’s nearly 18 miles away from his neighborhood.

“She talked him through dropping his location to her. She went there to pick him up and when she got there he was no longer standing. He was laying in the street,” Cheri Miller said.

Three months later, Cheri told Channel 9 that Ziggy still refuses to ride the bus home.

The Miller’s said they are considering taking legal action against CMS.

“I got a very vague response. ‘I’m sorry this happened to your son.’ No, What are you going to do to make sure it doesn’t happen again?” Cheri Miller said.

Miller said correspondence with the vice-chair of the CMS Board shows they referred the situation to the school board in hopes of getting answers.

However, that was nearly two months ago.

Jackson said that while CMS acknowledged questions regarding the incident, they did not issue a full response.

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