By Blake Neff
A newly-released video out of North Miami, Florida appears to show a man getting shot by police even though he is lying on the ground with his hands raised in the air, begging for officers not to shoot.
Charles Kinsey works as a caregiver to the disabled at a group home in North Miami. An autistic man living at the home escaped with a toy truck Monday, and Kinsey attempted to retrieve him. The situation abruptly escalated when police arrived, apparently responding to an emergency call that a man was roaming around with a gun.
Cell phone footage obtained and released by WSVN7 News shows Kinsey laying on the ground next to a heavy-set autistic man playing with a toy truck. Kinsey has his hands in the air and is trying to explain the situation to wary police at a distance.
“All he has is a toy truck,” Kinsey shouts. “A toy truck. I am a behavior therapist at a group home.”
The first cell phone video doesn’t show what happens next, but according to Kinsey, he was then shot by the police, even though his hands were still in the air. (RELATED: Man Poops Pants To Resist Police)
“When he shot me, it was so surprising,” Kinsey told WSVN from his hospital bed. “It was like a mosquito bite, and when it hit me, I’m like, ‘I still got my hands in the air, and I said, ‘No I just got shot! And I’m saying, ‘Sir, why did you shoot me?’ and his words to me, he said, ‘I don’t know.’”
A second video from after the shooting shows police moving to handcuff both Kinsey and the autistic man.
North Miami police released a statement that is low on details, but doesn’t contradict Kinsey’ narrative at any point.
“Officers were dispatched to the scene after a 911 call was received of an armed male suspect threatening suicide,” the statement says. “Arriving officers attempted to negotiate with two men on the scene, one of whom was later identified as suffering from autism. The other man was later identified as an employee of an assisted living facility. At some point during the on-scene negotiation, one of the responding officers discharged his weapon, striking the employee.”
The police department said it is investigating the issue, and added that the unnamed officer responsible for shooting Kinsey was placed on leave.
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