The teen accused of taking a Metrobus out on its route and crashing into a tree apologized Tuesday.
Metro police arrested 19-year-old William Jackson Friday and charged him with unauthorized use of a vehicle and fleeing the scene of an accident.
Jackson wore a bus driver's uniform, took a bus from the Bladensburg facility and went out on a route, officials said. He stopped to pick up and drop off passengers along the way and collected fares, witnesses said. Passengers didn't suspect anything was wrong until the bus slammed into a tree in Southeast.
The driver fled on foot, but police caught up to him.
"I am truly sorry for what I have allegedly been accused of," Jackson told News4's Pat Collins. "I personally would like to extend my deepest apologies to the good name of The Duke Ellington School of the Arts and to my family and friends, who I love very much. This incident has brought me closer to my family and to God."
Jackson didn't say why he did it, but his godmother, Linda Brown, who also employs Jackson at Eastern Market, told Collins, "He said he was bored and he was frustrated … He said he had been depressed."
At least one of Jackson's relatives is a Metrobus driver, and Jackson wants to be a Metrobus driver when he turns 21, Collins reported.
He is a student at Ellington.
"He's got a great voice and he's got a good heart," said friend Melvin Peterson.