The horrifying rape of an Auburn University student on a campus shuttle by both drivers was captured on the bus’ video surveillance system, according to court records.
James Don Johnson Junior, 32, and Tony Martin Patillo, 51, were arrested on Saturday and charged with the sexual assault that took place on September 16 aboard the Georgia university’s campus transport service Tiger Transit.
Patillo remains in the Lee County Jail on $127,000 bond. Johnson was released earlier this week after posting his $125,000 bond. Each has been charged with first-degree rape and first-degree sodomy.
Both men were drivers for First Transit which operates the shuttles – including Tiger Transit and Tiger TEN – but have since been fired.
The rape of an 18-year-old Auburn University student, allegedly by Tony Martin Patillo (left), 51, and James Don Johnson Jr (right), 32, on a campus shuttle on September 16 was captured on the bus’s surveillance system
Pictured is a bus on Auburn University’s campus. Both men were drivers for First Transit which operates the shuttles – including Tiger Transit and Tiger TEN – but have since been fired
According to the warrant affidavit, Auburn police received a call from a complainant about a white female laying on the ground near the entrance to an Aspen Heights apartment complex with a black male on top of her with his pants down, reports al.com.
The complainant provided a description to police and, when authorities arrived, they located the suspect and identified him as Patillo.
At the police station, Patillo admitted to having his pants down but denied having sex with the victim.
Police later found and interviewed the 18-year-old woman who told them ‘she did not remember anything due to her level of intoxication’.
An investigation showed that the woman ‘appeared to be incapacitated’ when she boarded a Tiger Transit bus that evening, and that she was sexually assaulted on the back of the bus by Patillo while Johnson drove the bus and ‘engaged in actions to perpetuate the crime,’ a police news release said.
From reviewing footage, police found that Patillo (pictured) took the victim to the back of the bus and appeared to have intercourse with her. Johnson gave a warning call before they picked up another passenger
From reviewing footage of Transit Bus 3372, police found that Patillo took the victim to the back of the bus and appeared to have intercourse with her. He then forced her to perform oral intercourse on him.
Meanwhile, Johnson, who was driving the bus, turned the lights off at the request of Patillo. Johnson later gave Patillo a warning call before turning the lights back on before they picked up another passenger.
The victim confirmed to police that she was the woman in the video but that she had no memory of the events nor did she consent to any sexual contact.
Just a week before the attack, Patillo posted on Facebook: ‘Attention everyone in the Opelik, Auburn and surrounding area!!! Drivers needed, qualifications, no license, no background check,the only qualifications needed is showing up for work.’
The company is required to conduct background checks of its employees, according to Auburn University.
First Transit said in a statement to The Plainsman, a student newspaper at Auburn University: ‘We are greatly troubled by the events of Friday night. The safe and reliable transportation of our passengers is our highest priority. It is a responsibility we take very seriously.’
Both Patillo (left) and Johnson (right), have been charged with first-degree rape and first-degree sodomy. Patillo remains in the Lee County Jail on $127,000 bond. Johnson was released earlier this week after posting his $125,000 bond
Just a week before the attack, Patillo posted on Facebook that First Transit was looking for drivers and that the company didn’t require background checks (above). Auburn University said it is re-evaluating its working relationship with First Transit
The company operates in 242 locations and is headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio.
It operates late-night weekend shuttles for Auburn University, which also has its own Campus Security Shuttles.
The university said it is re-evaluating its working relationship with First Transit.
‘Our top concern is the well-being of the victim, and we cannot stress in strong enough terms our shock and distress over this despicable act,’ the university release said. ‘We immediately provided support and all available resources to the victim and continue to do so.’