A North Miami police officer shot Charles Kinsey three times as he was trying to help an autistic man.

According to the union chief, the police officer aimed for the patient but mistakenly hit 47-year-old Kinsey. Reportedly, the toy truck the autistic man was holding looked like a safety threat.

Charles Kinsey was attending an autistic man when the police arrived and shot him in the leg. Photo credit: Miami Herald
Charles Kinsey was attending an autistic man when the police arrived and shot him in the leg. Photo credit: Miami Herald

Charles Kinsey then stated that he was comforting his autistic patient, who ran away from the home where Kinsey works. Police made it to the location, and Kinsey feared the worst. He laid on his back and threw his hands in the air, which were empty. He told the officer that he was unarmed and that he was attending an “autistic guy with a toy in his hand.” Kinsey also shouted that he was a therapist. Minutes later, one of the officers shot him in the leg.

When Kinsey asked why he was shot, he stated that the cop said he did not know. Reportedly, the shooting occurred after a call to 911 reporting an armed man threatening to kill himself.

To protect and serve

The name of the shooter was not revealed, but he stated that he “took this job to save lives and help people.” He commented that he did “what he had to do” to accomplish such objective.

The investigation is being carried out by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, alongside the state attorney’s office.

Police Chief Gary Eugene referred to the situation as delicate, mainly due to the recent racial-biased shooting. Police departments may be further criticized due to not ensuring that officers only shoot when there is a sight of a weapon. Most of the latest racial-biased shootings have been occasioned for that exact reason. In most cases, the gun was indeed present, which keeps police officers on high alert when it comes to criminals pulling out what could potentially be a firearm.

Police officers also react to fear, although they are trained to act under such pressing circumstances. Seeing a weapon on a suspect indicates a feasible threat that may forbid the officer from arriving home safe whenever his shift comes to an end.

Luckily, Kinsey’s wounds were non-lethal, as he is now awaiting full recovery. If the officer had killed him, then the wave of turmoil from racial-biased shootings would have hit America once more.

The fact that police officers are more likely to shoot black individuals is of actual concern, but in the most recent cases, the suspect did have a firearm on him, or there were reports of a gun. In Kinsey’s case, there was no firearm, which might be the reason why he did not get killed. But there is still no apparent threat to argument why the cop shot him in the first place, as he put his hands in the air stayed on the floor without resistance.

Chief Eugene noted that “there are many questions” regarding the shooting, but he did not disclose any more details rather than assuring that the police department will “get all the answers.” No gun was retrieved at the scene

Source: NY Daily News