Penny Wolf was intoxicated and carrying a loaded pistol when she dropped off a busload of kids on Dec. 23 at Swanson Elementary School, according to a criminal complaint.
As a result, Wolf, 43, of Milwaukee was charged Dec. 27 in Waukesha County Circuit Court with her third operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated offense, possession of a controlled substance and possession of a firearm on school grounds. She has two prior drunken driving convictions on her record.
She was charged four days after she was arrested shortly after police were alerted by staff at Swanson Elementary, 305 N. Calhoun Road, of a school bus being driven erratically on its way to the school around 8:54 a.m. Friday, Dec. 23.
According to the complaint, several eyewitnesses told police Wolf was driving badly on her route, consistently speeding, taking wide turns, driving onto curbs and nearly swerving into a ditch. At least one student also said Wolf blew through a stop sign and slid past a number of stops on her route.
Wolf, then an employee at First Student Inc., a private bus contractor, told police she had taken a stimulant that morning and was carrying her fully-loaded Smith and Wesson .38-caliber pistol because she had forgotten it was in her pocket, the complaint said. She reportedly blamed icy road conditions for her driving.
She submitted to a breath test, which did not register any alcohol, but reportedly failed some field sobriety tests and was arrested. She was also carrying a bottle with three Adderall pills in it, the complaint said, but denied using any of them.
Court records indicate that Wolf made her initial appearance the same day she was charged and was released on an $8,000 signature bond and a $2,000 cash bond.
Her next court appearance is scheduled for Jan. 17. If convicted, she could face up to about 6½ years behind bars and nearly $20,000 in fines.