A behaviour therapist who was trying to help an autistic man says North Miami police shot him in the leg with an assault rifle while he was attempting to help his patient.
Charles Kinsey’s attorney released the footage on Wednesday, which shows the 47-year-old lying on the ground with his hands in the air, pleading with officers not to shoot him. Kinsey’s 23-year-old patient can be seen sitting next to him, playing with a toy truck, The Independent reports.
Kinsey told WSVN-Channel 7:
I thought it was a mosquito bite, and when it hit me I had my hands in the air, and I’m thinking I just got shot. And I’m saying, ‘Sir, why did you shoot me?’ and his words to me were, ‘I don’t know.’
Kinsey’s attorney, Hilton Napoleon, told the Miami Herald: “It doesn’t make any sense.”
Police claim that the officers had arrived on the scene after receiving reports of a man with a gun threatening to shoot himself. But Kinsey says he was attempting to calm an autistic patient who ran away from a group home. The patient was playing with a toy truck.
Kinsey could be heard in the video saying: “All he has is a toy truck. A toy truck. I am a behavior therapist at a group home.”
North Miami Police said in a statement:
Arriving officers attempted to negotiate with two men on the scene, one of whom was later identified as suffering from autism. At some point during the on-scene negotiation, one of the responding officers discharged his weapon, striking the employee.
Luckily, Kinsey is recovering from the shooting and is expected to be released from the hospital in the next few days.
Despite all this, Kinsey told Channel 7 he was more worried about his patient than himself.
Another troubling example of an innocent person being targeted by American police.