Jose Luis Garza: IDEA North Mission School Bus Driver Accused of Sexually Assaulting Minors

Last week, Jose Luis Garza, a local charter school bus driver, was taken into custody for charges of child abuse. He was arraigned on May 14, and is currently being held in the Hidalgo County Jail.

Local IDEA North Mission school bus driver, Jose Luis Garza, was charged with sexually abusing at least three of the kids he drove to school.

The 59-year-old was arraigned on Monday, and now faces one count of sexually assaulting a child under the age of 14. On May 11 charges, he faced two counts of the same charge. The first-degree felony carries a sentence of up to life in prison if found guilty.

As of early Monday evening, Garza was being held in Hidalgo County Jail, with a bond set at $320,000.

One of his victims is reportedly an eight-year-old girl, whom Garza sexually assaulted with his fingers at least twice between January 2017 and May 2018. He is believed to have done the same thing to another eight-year-old girl between February and May 2018.

Hidalgo County Inmate Information

Charges on Jose Luis Garza (Photo: Hidalgo County Jail)

He also is accused of sexually abusing a five-year-old girl between August 2017 and May 2018.

Garza resigned from IDEA North Mission with notice on April 23. This was three days after a complaint was filed with the Hidalgo County Sheriff’s Office, saying that “several students made an outcry against their bus driver…of touching them while riding on the school bus.”

Garza was booked on May 10, 2018. He is described as a white male, who stands at 5’8”, and weighs 180 pounds. He has graying hair, and brown eyes.

IDEA Public Schools released a statement explaining that they are cooperating with the investigation. They added that since it is ongoing, no further details can be provided at this time.

According to sources, several more charges may be pending against Garza, as there are believed to be an additional six victims ranging between five and nine years old. The sheriff’s office will prepare a news release with more information about this ongoing case on May 15.