Crime

Bibb high school student pleads guilty to choking 11-year-old on school bus

A Macon teenager was sentenced to two years on probation Monday in the 2014 choking of an 11-year-old on a Bibb County school bus.

Iesha Latrece Tolbert, 17, pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges of simple assault and cruelty to children during a Bibb County Superior Court hearing.

Tolbert initially was charged with simple battery, aggravated assault and cruelty to children.

Prosecutor Jonathan Adams said Tolbert and an 11-year-old Miller Middle School student exchanged words on the bus Aug. 11, 2014, about a neighborhood fight.

During the encounter, Tolbert placed her hands around the younger girl’s neck and began choking her, he said. Tolbert was a Central High School student at the time.

Despite the age difference between the girls, Adams acknowledged that they were the same height and weight.

Mark Beberman, Tolbert’s lawyer, said his client is back in school and has plans to graduate in 2016.

Before issuing Tolbert’s sentence, Judge Howard Simms asked the petite, slight girl in front of him what she had to say.

Tolbert stood quietly for a moment.

Simms implored her to speak, “Height, weight and reach notwithstanding, you got into a fight with an 11-year-old.”

Tolbert replied, “It was a misunderstanding. A big misunderstanding.”

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