MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A man was taken into custody for allegedly holding up a MATA Bus at gunpoint and forcing the driver to take him places, Memphis Police say.
According to reports, a bus with several passengers was driving in the airport area on Monday. The suspect, later identified as Kenneth Mallory, pulled out a 9mm handgun and threatened everyone inside.
He started waving it and demanding the passengers to get off the bus. He let them go without hurting them, police say.
Mallory, 34, allegedly made the bus driver stay and told him to take him where he wanted to go. The driver complied but activated the bus’s 911 Emergency System. A witness told WREG they saw a sign on the bus that said: “Help.”
Shortly after, MPD arrived, and the bus driver fled. Mallory was still on the bus, and officers yelled commands at him. He reportedly threw the gun while threatening to kill himself, the driver and law enforcement.
Michelle Williams, a MATA driver, said it’s not unusual for passengers to have attitudes. “Their day may not be going good. So, you never know, and they will take it out on the bus driver.”
Mallory was taken into custody, and police found 18 bags of marijuana and a joint on him.
He was charged with Aggravated Kidnapping, Aggravated Assault, Possession of a Substance with the Intention to Sell and Possession of a Firearm/Dangerous Felony.
Mallory is due back in court Friday.
“We are cooperating with the MPD investigation and defer any statements regarding the details of this incident to them,” MATA said in a statement. “At MATA, safety is a top priority. We remain committed to ensuring the safety and security of our customers and employees. “