A 13-year-old autistic boy was shot by police after they arrived at his home to assist his mum in dealing with him during a "mental breakdown".
Golda Barton said that her son Linden Cameron was having trouble coping with the fact she was returning to work for the first time in nearly a year and experienced a "mental breakdown".
The mum called the police and asked for a crisis intervention team to help her manage the situation and get her son treatment.
But tragedy unfolded when police arrived, with Barton saying that when he saw them her son ran away.
She told KUTV that she then heard someone yell "get down on the ground" three times, followed by several gunshots.
Linden suffered damage to his shoulder, ankles, intestines, bladder and colon, as well as nerve damage in the horror incident.
"I said, 'Look, he's unarmed. He doesn't have anything. He just gets mad and he starts yelling and screaming,'" Barton told KUTV about her call to police. "He's a kid he's trying to get attention. He doesn't know how to regulate."
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"Why didn't they tase him? Why didn't they shoot him with a rubber bullet?" Barton told the station. "He's a small child. Why don't you just tackle him? You are big police officers with massive amounts of resources."
She added: “They’re supposed to come out and be able to de-escalate a situation using the most minimal force possible.”
Salt Lake City Police Sgt. Keith Horrocks said in a news conference on Saturday that officers had been called to the area because a boy was having a "psychological episode and had made threats to some folks with the weapon".
Police confirmed they did not find a weapon at the scene.
Regarding the incident in Salt Lake City, Neurodiverse Utah said in a statement: “Police were called because help was needed but instead more harm was done when officers from the SLPD expected a 13-year-old experiencing a mental health episode to act calmer and [more] collected than adult trained officers.”
The incident now said to be being investigated by a team consisting primarily of officers from the West Valley City Police Department."While the full details of this incident are yet to be released as an investigation takes place, I will say that I am thankful this young boy is alive and no one else was injured," Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall said in a statement, according to KUTV.
"No matter the circumstances, what happened on Friday night is a tragedy and I expect this investigation to be handled swiftly and transparently for the sake of everyone involved."
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