Cops: Boy, 12, stole school bus, took it on 15-mile joyride

Updated:

PANAMA CITY, Fla. —

A 12-year-old boy was arrested on charges of taking a school bus on a joyride, Panama City authorities said.

The Panama City News Herald reported Wednesday that Walmart employees called sheriff's deputies after noticing the bus being driven erratically through their parking lot early Tuesday. Employees said the child appeared to be having problems parking the bus.

Bay County deputies said the 12-year-old boy was riding his bike Tuesday at 4 a.m. when he noticed the unlocked school bus in someone's driveway. The keys had been left inside the bus, so he got in and drove it for 15 miles.

School district officials said camera footage from the bus showed that the boy appeared to handle the bus well.

"We watched him on there and he was pretty cool in character. He just cranked it up and drove it like he had done it all his life," said Bay Dist. School Security Chief Mike Jones said.

He is in the custody of the Department of Juvenile Justice and has been charged with grand theft and felony criminal mischief.