Adam Wolf wrote that a police officer "aggressively approached" the teenager and tackled him to the ground.
Trigger Warning: This story had details of police brutality that some readers may find disturbing
Police officers when called to handle a situation end up resorting to violence more often than not instead of de-escalating the situation. In this case, a Ring doorbell captured an officer in Vacaville, California, hurling a 17-year-old autistic kid to the ground, and punching him in the face on Wednesday. The now-viral video was posted by the teen's father on Facebook, who said his son Preston has autism and ADHD and "looks and acts younger than he is." Adam Wolf wrote that a police officer "aggressively approached" the teenager and tackled him to the ground, CBS News reports.
Just another reason why cops on the street need to be replaced or teamed with social workers. Shame on that cop and his employers.— Imagez-West (@ImagezWest) April 23, 2021
In the video, we see Preston standing with his scooter on a sidewalk when an officer exits his vehicle and approaches him while yelling at him to sit down. Preston immediately complies and sits down with his legs crossed. The officer then yells at the teenager to put his legs out, but when the teen doesn't do so, the officer picks up the scooter and throws it a few feet away. Then he forcefully tries to grab the teen but is met with pushback as Preston flinches and leans back, seeming scared. Spooked by the exchange, Preston tries to run away, but the officer grabs him and slams him onto the road. In another video of the incident, the officer appears to be on top of the teen who now has his back on the road. The officer yells at the boy to put his hands behind his back while he continues to remain in the same position, before punching him in the face.
The kid yells: "You punched me in the f***ing head." The officer quickly responds and says, "You're gonna get hurt. Don't make me hurt you more. Don't make me hurt you more." Soon, two additional officers arrive at the scene for backup. Speaking to Fox affiliate KTXL, Wolf said another boy had tried to pick a fight with Preston prior to the police arriving and his son had picked up a metal pole off the ground to defend himself. That's when an adult intervened and Preston went away to play with a neighbor kid. The incident has yet again drawn criticism on the excessive use of police force in unnecessary situations. Vacaville Police Department Acting chief Ian Schmutzler issued a statement to CBS News and said the department is investigating the incident.
Standing by his officer, Schmutzler disputed reports that the officer knew Preston had autism. "We are scouring the dispatch recordings, body-worn camera video, Ring camera video, and any other visual or audio evidence we can find," Schmutzler said. He added that officers went to the boy's residence on Thursday and met the family to "foster the dialogue needed to understand what happened from all points of view," Schmutzler added. "Any time there is a use of force, it is difficult to watch. Uses of force are taken seriously by the department and all use of force incidents are reviewed by the supervisor, the watch commander, and a use of force review committee." He continued: "I want to assure you that I do NOT take this circumstance lightly and that I am dedicated to doing all I can to ensure accountability and transparency as we examine ALL aspects of this incident," Schmutzler said.
At one part of the video why did the cop use a choke maneuver by using the boys arm against him?? Also find the kids who were bullying him. That's how this situation all started. Have all of them liable for what happened. #copneedsbettertraining #differentapproach #waitforbackup— TK (@own_UR_night_LV) April 24, 2021
Wolf said the kid probably won't trust a police officer again. "I am pro-police, but I am not pro ABUSE! This individual and department must be held accountable for their actions. NO child, disability or not, deserves to be treated like this."
"Don't make me hurt you " words of a abusive person.— John Lenz (@Ogyafs) April 23, 2021