Police Investigating After Doorbell Footage Shows Cop Punching Teen With Autism

by : Emily Brown on : 25 Apr 2021 14:56

A California police department has launched an investigation after a Ring doorbell captured footage of an officer punching a 17-year-old boy in the face. 

Father Adam Wolf took to Facebook on Wednesday, April 22, to share the video in which his son, Preston, could be seen standing on the pavement with a scooter in Vacaville, California.


The footage shows a police officer leaving his car and shouting at Preston to sit down. When he later attempts to flee, the officer slams him to the ground and punches him in the face.

You can see the first part of the footage below. Warning: contains content some viewers may find disturbing.

In his post on Facebook, Wolf explained that his son has autism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and that ‘he looks and acts younger than he is.’


Preston initially complies with the officer in the footage and sits down when the officer tells him to. However, when he does not immediately put his legs out as instructed, the officer picks up his scooter and tosses it across the pavement.

The officer seemingly attempts to grab at Preston, causing him to lean back in what looks to be fear. The teen then attempts to run away, at which point the officer grabs his arm and pushes him to the ground.

See the second half of the incident here:


Wolf slammed the officer’s actions on Facebook and asked viewers to make the video go viral, explaining that the scene was ‘witnessed by multiple neighbors and caught on video.’

He went on to say that his son will likely never trust a police officer again, and that while he himself is ‘pro police’, he is not ‘pro abuse.’

The father added: ‘This individual and department must be held accountable for their actions. NO child, disability or not, deserves to be treated like this.’

After the officer punched Preston, he was joined at the scene by two other officers.

Adam Wolf/FacebookAdam Wolf/Facebook

In a statement to CBS News, Vacaville Police Department Acting Chief Ian Schmutzler said that he appreciates there is ‘justified concern’ about the incident. He assured the department has launched an investigation and that it is ‘scouring the dispatch recordings, body-worn camera video, Ring camera video and any other visual or audio evidence [it] can find.’

Schmutzler commented:

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.

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.


In the wake of the incident, police are said to have met with Preston’s family members to ‘foster the dialogue needed to understand what happened from all points of view.’

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Emily Brown

Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University, and went on to become a freelance writer and blogger. Emily contributed to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news as well as longer form features.

Topics: News, Autism, California, Now, Police


CBS News and 1 other
  1. CBS News

    Doorbell video captures police officer punching and throwing teen with autism to the ground

  2. Adam Wolf/Facebook