By Paul Martino

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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – A school van driver has been arrested for allegedly inappropriately touching a non-verbal female student.

According to police, the incident happened near the Children’s Institute of Pittsburgh in Squirrel Hill on Tuesday around 8:30 a.m.

A witness told police she was walking her dog when she saw the van parked near the school. As she passed the van, she claims the driver was seated next to a student and was inappropriately touching the teenage girl.

He has since been identified as 71-year-old Lavalle Tucker of McKees Rocks.

lavalle tucker Van Driver Arrested, Accused Of Inappropriately Touching Non Verbal Female Student

(Photo Courtesy: Allegheny County Jail)

The witness said she banged on the van’s window and yelled, which startled Tucker and he stopped touching the girl.

The witness proceeded to take a photo of the van’s license plate and reported the incident to school officials.

Police were called to the scene and Tucker was arrested a short time later.

The Children’s Institute issued this written statement: “The Children’s Institute of Pittsburgh’s first priority is to protect the rights, health and well-being of our patients, clients, and students. The incident that was reported on Dec. 19 occurred on an adjacent city street and involved an employee of a transportation company contracted by a local school district. We, as an organization, take all reports and allegations seriously and this incident is being investigated by Pittsburgh Police.”

School officials declined to answer questions or be interviewed on camera.

He is facing a list of charges including, corruption of minors, indecent assault and endangering the welfare of children.

Tucker is being held in the Allegheny County Jail and faces a preliminary hearing on Dec. 29.

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