Note: Thanks to Nancy Hokkanen for this troubling media report. In this world of zero tolerance and anti-bullying programs, our children with special needs are vulnerable. While we don't condone violence, we also know that autism behaviors can trigger aggression. Is an arrest ever the answer?
We need to do our best (and the majority of us do) to prevent aggressions, which can be self-injurious behavior or turned outward to peers, strangers, teachers. We work with behaviorists, we use biomed, medications, strategies, charts, graphs - everything under the sun and moon to try to help our kids "fit in." The boy in the story is ten years old. Ten. What happens when he is 20? 30? My 22 year old daughter has the grip of a gorilla. The epidemic is going to worsen as children become men and women. Then what? We sound the alarm not to depress, but to awaken those who ignore the realities that are coming - and are already here for many of us.
From Colorado. WestWord.com:
A Castle Rock child with autism is facing third-degree assault and harassment charges stemming from a schoolyard tiff almost two years ago, when the boy, Logan Thompson, says he retaliated against a student's push by slapping him in the face.
Thompson is facing two years in juvenile detention on the grounds that he is a serious threat to the safety of students and teachers in the Castle Rock school district.
“We don’t want to see any more assaultive behavior,” said Chelsea Koch, a deputy district attorney with Douglas County, in court on Thursday, July 13. “All we are asking for is that Logan gets the services that he needs.”
The DA’s office has refused to drop the case against Thompson, opting instead on Thursday to keep him under the supervision of the district court and in a highly structured “management plan.” Under the plan, Thompson has been required to attend half a dozen therapy and counseling sessions per week, some of which have to be paid for by his family.
Thompson’s mother, Lisa, believes that Logan is being criminalized by the DA’s office for his autism. “This is not the way this should have gone,” she says. “This is a ten-year-old boy who snuggles his fluffy toys at night. And he is being kept in court specifically because he has autism.”
Read more here.