A newly-surfaced police body cam video shows Officer David Grossman taking down a 14-year-old autistic boy for playing with string in Buckeye, Arizona on July 19.
In the body camera footage, Grossman approached Connor Leibel and asked what he was doing.
Connor told Grossman that he was “stimming,” which is self-stimulation, including repetitive actions, that autistic people do to calm and stimulate themselves. In this case, Connor was flicking a small string in front of his face, according to his family, notes KNXV.
“I’m okay. I’m okay,” Connor screamed as Grossman took him down.
Buckeye Police Department spokesperson Detective Tamela Skaggs said: “The internal investigation found there was no use of force,” even though the police body cam video clearly shows use of force.
Grossman claimed that he saw “a subject” acting suspiciously like a person who was using an “inhalant drug,” according to police.
The boy’s family released a statement:
The family is asking for three things to help seek justice for Connor: first, a personal apology from the officer; second, that the officer perform community service with the autistic community; and third, that Buckeye institute a mandatory training program to prevent an incident like this from ever happening again.