Teen With Autism Assumed Drunk, Arrested
An 18-year-old with autism was walking home from a video game store when he was stopped by police who mistook traits of autism for drunkenness and booked the teen in jail, the boy’s mother told reporters. Now the mother has lodged a complaint against the police department in Newfoundland, Canada in relation to the incident.
Police approached Dane Spurrell early Sunday morning to tell him that he should walk on the sidewalk, not in the road. When the teen explained that there was no sidewalk, the police asked to smell his breath. Spurrell would not allow the officers to do so and they arrested him, his mother said.
Spurrell’s mother did not know what happened to her son until she reported him missing several hours later. Spurrell was released soon after his mother located him and no charges were filed.
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Currently Spurrell’s mother has lodged a complaint with the police department and an independent commission is investigating the incident. There is also a criminal investigation looking into the actions of the officers, reports The Canadian Press. To read more click here.
Read more stories like this one. Sign up for Disability Scoop's free email newsletter to get the latest developmental disability news sent straight to your inbox.