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East Bay teen burned on bus back at Berkeley school

Sasha Fleischman went back to school for the first time in almost a month after being set on fire onboard an AC Transit bus.
December 2, 2013 7:44:43 PM PST
Sasha Fleischman, the high school senior who was home in time for Thanksgiving after being badly burned last month on an AC Transit bus in Oakland, had another milestone Monday.

Sasha went back to school for the first time in almost a month. Police say Sasha was a victim of a hate crime.

While recovering from second and third degree burns, Sasha talked about wanting nothing more than to return to school.

"I'm excited and I think everyone at school will be as excited to see me," said Fleischman.

Sahsa's mom drove the 18-year-old to Maybeck High School in Berkeley. Sasha was wearing leg bandages and slowly walked alone toward the school entrance.

Sasha's mother had some worries Monday.

"Stamina-wise, it's, they've been through a tremendous, horrific thing and, it's, the healing is still going to be going on for months," said Sasha's mother Debbie Crandall.

"It wasn't a huge fire, but it was pretty scary," said Sasha.

Sasha was on board the bus and had fallen asleep when, police say, a 16-year-old boy set Sasha's skirt on fire. The 16-year-old has been arrested and charged as an adult.

Sasha acknowledged having limitations.

"I can't walk as fast and I need to be more careful physically," said Sasha.

The school director says Sasha's arrival today was low key.

"Sasha is the kind of person that would just want to slip right back in, so we didn't really have anything planned today, but I know we're all thrilled to have Sasha back," said Maybeck School Director Trevor Cralle.

Sasha's mom says she will continue transporting Sasha back and forth to and from school. She adds, eventually Sasha wants to get on a bus, but only with friends.


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