VENICE- 71-year-old Leonard Villari, a school bus driver for Sarasota county schools was arrested and charged with battery.

According to the probable cause affidavit, a 13-year-old girl was at the cafeteria when the suspect approached her a couple of times and played with her and touched her neck.

Another student told him to stop and the school security guard witnessed the contact and brought the student to the front office.

In the report, the student says last year, Villari consistently said to her ‘baby girl’, ‘I know where you live’ and ‘I love you’, when she was riding the bus.

He has worked for the school district since March 7, 2013.

After the criminal case is wrapped up then its due process with the school board.

Villari was released Wednesday on a $25,000 bond and he’s been reassigned to other duties in the Transportation Department with no contact with students.

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Krystel Knowles
Krystel Knowles joined SNN in February of 2016. She is a graduate of the University of South Florida with a Bachelors in Mass Communications and minors in News Editorial and Telecommunication Production. Krystel is trilingual- fluent in Spanish, English and French (and picked up some Portuguese while studying abroad in Brazil). Krystel started her career in print journalism. She was a correspondent for the St. Pete Times Newspaper, staff writer for Focus Magazine, and head reporter and photographer for South Tampa community news publication. In 2011, she made the switch from print to broadcast journalism. She has since worked as a photojournalist for Fox 35 in Orlando, and also as a photojournalist/multimedia journalist for ABC action news in Tampa. Although she was born in Tampa, Krystel moved to New Port Beach, California within a few months. She then spent 8 years in Lima, Peru before moving to Miami, Florida. While living in Peru, Krystel danced at the National School of Ballet and sang in a choir. Her passion for ballet led Krystel to figure skating in 2015. Her other hobbies include: skateboarding, snowboarding, surfing, and traveling.