Rochester School Bus Driver Arrested, Charged With Sexually Abusing A 13 Year Old On A Bus And Witness Tampering

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FILE PHOTO: Signage is seen at the United States Department of Justice headquarters in Washington, D.C.

CONTACT: Barbara Burns
PHONE: (716) 843-5817
FAX #: (716) 551-3051

ROCHESTER, N.Y. – U.S. Attorney Trini E. Ross announced today that Tomas Rosario, 74, of Rochester, NY, was arrested and charged by criminal complaint with attempted receipt of child pornography, possession of child pornography, and attempted tampering with a witness. The charges carry a mandatory minimum penalty of five years in prison and a maximum of 20 years.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Meghan K. McGuire, who is handling the case, stated that according to the complaint, on March 11, 2022, the Rochester Police Department received a report of a sexual assault of a 13-year-old female (Minor Victim). Subsequent investigation determined that the Minor Victim was allegedly touched inappropriately by her school bus driver, later identified as Rosario. A review of surveillance video captured on cameras installed on the school van shows Rosario having inappropriate sexual discussions with the Minor Victim on the way to and from school. The Minor Victim and Rosario are the only occupants in the van. Rosario also the drove the Minor Victim past his residence and told her that if there comes a day when she does not want to go to school, he could provide her with his phone number so that Minor Victim could call him. Rosario then gave the Minor Victim a piece of paper with his phone number written on it. Rosario also told the Minor Victim not to tell anyone about their conversation. During the ride home from school, Rosario directed the Minor Victim to do something sexually inappropriate. The Minor Victim reminds Rosario about the camera inside the vehicle. Rosario then inappropriately touches the Minor Victim multiple times. Rosario tells the Minor Victim again not to tell anyone because he could have a big problem. A few days after this sexual assault occurred, Rosario encountered the Minor Victim in a convenience store and again warned her not to tell anyone. This encounter was captured by the store’s security cameras.

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On April 13, 2022, the Rochester Police Department obtained a warrant to search Rosario’s cell phone, during which investigators recovered images of child pornography.

Members of the public who have information regarding this case are asked to call the FBI at 1-585-546-2220.

The complaint is the result of an investigation by the Rochester Police Department, under the direction of Interim Police Chief David Smith, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Child Exploitation Task Force, under the direction of Agent-in-Charge Stephen Belongia, and the Monroe County District Attorney’s Office, under the direction of District Attorney Sandra Doorley.

The fact that a defendant has been charged with a crime is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.  

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