Saint Louis' bus goes missing; driver arrested on DWI charge

After Saint Louis suffered a 70-55 loss at St. Bonaventure on Wednesday night, the Billikens prepared to make the trip home.

Just one problem.

Their bus and its driver were missing.

The Billikens soon learned that the driver, 56-year-old Linda Edmister, had taken the bus 40 miles away to Randolph, New York, where she was arrested on a charge of driving while intoxicated, according to New York State Police Trooper James O'Callaghan.

Edmister, of Gasport, New York, registered a 0.22 blood alcohol content, which is more than five times above the legal limit of 0.04 for New York drivers with commercial licenses. O'Callaghan said law enforcement officers are grateful because they know the outcome could have been much different, considering Edmister's level of intoxication.

"With a vehicle that large and her intoxication level, we're actually lucky nothing happened," O'Callaghan told ESPN.

Edmister did not resist arrest before she was transported to a jail in Cattaraugus County, New York. She does not have any prior arrests, per O'Callaghan.

Edmister's employer, Grand Tours, said in an email Thursday that she had been fired and that the company was "extremely disappointed and troubled by her behavior.''

O'Callaghan said police don't believe Edmister was drunk when she drove the team to the arena. He said troopers don't know exactly when she left the campus or why. The game ended around 9:30 p.m. Edmister was pulled over shortly before 11 p.m., troopers said.

"At first, you didn't know whether the bus was stolen or what the total story was," he said.

While state authorities searched for the bus, the players sat in the arena. The team posted pictures on Twitter of players talking on their cellphones, playing cards and napping.

Saint Louis had concerns about the equipment and gear that had been left on the bus, but the players and staff retrieved their items after police arrested Edmister and brought the bus back to St. Bonaventure.

O'Callaghan said state troopers found Edmister and the missing bus with the help of GPS-equipped items that had been left on board. School officials said the item was head coach Travis Ford's iPad.

After grabbing their items from the original bus, the Billikens transferred to a new bus with a new driver and traveled to a local airport. Team spokesman Brian Kunderman said the Billikens reached the airport just after midnight.

"Is it unusual? Yes," O'Callaghan said. "Typically the bus would have been stolen but not the driver arrested for being intoxicated."

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.