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Friday, October 22, 2021

Tasing an Autistic Man

In The Politics of Autism, I discuss interactions between police and autistic people.  Police officers need training to respond appropriately.  When they do not -- as recent events have shown -- things get out of hand

Holly Bristow at Fox 35 Orlando
Eustis Police tased a man with severe autism multiple times Saturday in what Police Chief Craig Capris calls a "perfect storm."

"We did everything per policy per protocol per policy people say you tased an autistic man. That’s not true. We tased a felony suspect that wasn’t complying. We later found out he happened to be autistic," Chief Capri told FOX 35 News.

Officers eventually get the man into handcuffs. A little over four minutes into the video the people start running towards the officers yelling, "We know him! He’s autistic! He’s non-communicative."

It’s the man’s family. They say he has the mental capacity of a toddler.

Officers can be heard explaining that they tased the man, identified as 20-year-old Louis Grahai. He was uncuffed and put in an ambulance.

According to a police report, once officers realized Louis didn’t have the mental capacity to commit a crime, they let him go without pressing charges.