Charter bus driver accused of driving Sebring High School students while drunk

A charter bus driver is behind bars after being accused of driving drunk with students on board.

He was taking more than 30 graduating Sebring High School seniors to Daytona Beach for a class trip when students noticed him driving erratically.


One parent observed the driver, 55-year-old Keith Shifflett, running multiple red lights and cutting off drivers. That's when she took it upon herself to get her car in front of the bus to stop it. Parents say they're thankful everyone is safe.

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Video shows the moment parents of Sebring High School students confront charter bus driver 55-year-old Keith Shifflett. He was driving about 30 students and four chaperones from Sebring to Dayton Lagoon as part of senior trip for Project Graduation which is a parent-led non-profit not affiliated with the school.

Courtesy: Highlands County Sheriffs Office

Courtesy: Highlands County Sheriffs Office

"They said that he was just a little off and that he was passing out at the wheel," parent Mychelle Tomak said.

Tomak's son was one of the students on board. Parent Gisele Diaz was following a few cars behind in her own car when her daughter called her from the bus.

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"She was like this guy is running lights, he's cutting off people. We can hear people in the background screaming. And then I had another of the moms that was in the bus chaperoning as well, and she called me. She's like, this guy is driving crazy, how do we stop him," Diaz said.

That's when Diaz got her car in front of the bus and slowed down until it stopped. Videos captured by Diaz showed the moment deputies performed a field sobriety test of Shifflett after parents called 911.

Diaz later found this beer can in the trash can in the bus which had only been on the road for about 15 minutes.


Shifflett is now facing a slew charges.

The bus was provided by Holiday Coach Lines.

"Keith was immediately terminated when arrested. He has been with us around eight years without any complaints or concerns. We have random drug screenings and have never had any positive results. We’re a small company and in 32 years have never had something like this happen," the company president, Michael Kanago, said in a statement emailed to FOX 13.

"I just to express our sincere gratitude for the parents that stepped up to make sure that these kids stayed safe," Tomak said.

Shifflett is facing multiple charges, including DUI and cruelty toward children. He remains in the Highlands County Jail without bond.

As for the trip, the kids were all able to safely make it to Daytona Lagoon in another bus and several other cars.

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