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Pre-trial diversions rejected for school bus mechanics
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Three school bus mechanics must have their cases settled in court after the appeals court rejected their last-ditch efforts to avoid trial through pre-trial diversions for their part in an alleged cover up after a 7-year-old was killed while boarding a bus with malfunctioning safety equipment.The defendants, Greg Pope, Jesse Grant Craven and Tommy Davenport, each had their cases sent back before the local trial court for prosecution after the Court of Criminal Appeals ruled prosecutors and the trial judge are within their rights to reject requests for pre-trial diversions.A pre-trial diversion would have meant the charges would have been dropped and permanently erased provided the men did not get into any trouble during a two-year period. The decision comes well over a year after the bus driver in the case, Barbara K. Nunley, 64, entered no-contest pleas to the two criminal counts before Special Judge Eric Sexton and was issued a three-year judicial diversion. As part of her probation, she will not be able to drive a school bus again and had to perform 24 hours public service work.Nunley was driving the bus when it pulled in front of the home of first-grader Sedryc Simmons.