Diamond Rust, was the then-20 year old mother, toting two toddlers on her way to enroll her daughter into Yu-Ying, a hard-to-get-into chinese language immersion school. Rust was traveling from Southeast DC to Northeast on a cold February day last year when she was beaten by transit police for allegedly not paying $2.25 in bus fare. Photos of her broken teeth, broken leg and busted lip went viral and influenced the DC Council’s decision to decriminalize fare evasion in 2019. Rust was a student of an adult learning program at the time of her arrest and beating and technically rode the bus for free but she did not have proof of her free pass when she entered the bus.  Regardless of her not donning the fare card, the bus driver waved her on with no contest because she was boarding with the two children and a stroller.  Rust had not sat down before an undercover transit officer asked her to get off the bus with her children.  Upon her exit, a verbal altercation ensued between her and the officer and he ended it by arresting Rust, slamming her face on the concrete sidewalk in front of Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary school and breaking one of her legs.  On June 5, 2020, WMATA settled this matter with Rust for an undisclosed sum.  Attorney Yaida Ford represented Rust in this matter and was able to secure a settlement without filing suit against the officer.

 

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