Bus mechanic fined for slapping eight-year-old boy in face

A MAN who slapped a child after a bus broke down appeared in the Hervey Bay Magistrates Court on Thursday.

Maryborough resident Satuala Sauila was charged with one count of common assault.

The 51-year-old man who works as a mechanic for Wide Bay Transit was called to a broken-down school bus in Maryborough West on May 1.

After inspecting the bus Sauila was unable to determine the fault and a replacement bus was called to pick up the remaining children.

The children were ordered off the broken bus and told to wait until the replacement arrived.

The court heard an eight-year-old boy was mucking around with mates near the road, putting himself in danger.

Sauila and the bus driver tried to get the boy and his friends off the road.

The victim then gave a two-fingered gesture toward Sauila.

Sauila slapped the victim in the face, causing redness.

The victim went to the police station and made a formal complaint.

Sauila said he was concerned for the boy's safety and was remorseful.

Magistrate Graeme Tatnell said despite Sauila's remorse the charge was serious.

"We must take the assault of a child very seriously," he said.

Mr Tatnell fined Sauila $500 but did not record a conviction.

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