A 16-year-old autistic boy suffering a seizure inside a bathroom of a fast food restaurant Thursday night ended up handcuffed by police who determined he was somehow breaking the law.
The boy’s mother told her daughter to call 911 after she found her son on the bathroom of a El Pollo Loco restaurant suffering a seizure.
But Fresno police officer Rodney Zumkehr arrived and shoved him hard against the wall and began punching him, thinking he was on drugs – a man trained only in escalating altercations.
“We called paramedics for help, we did not call police,” the boy’s mother, Lourdes Ponce, told ABC 7. “He was not hurting anybody, he was having a seizure.”
Ponce tried to tell Zumkehr her son is autistic but continued arresting her son.
“He saw that my son was throwing up and instead of helping him so that he wouldn’t choke on his vomit, they had him on the ground in handcuffs,” she said.
It was only when she ran to her car to get paperwork proving he is autistic that police released him. But only after making her sign a “certificate of release.”
Paramedics were then able to transport him to the hospital as originally intended where the boy is still being treated.
Ponce said she had taken him to a doctor earlier that day because of his seizures. She said they were at El Pollo Loco when she heard him fall.
“I stood outside the door, I heard him hit the floor, I tried to open the door but it was locked, that’s when I asked for help,” she said.
Employees unlocked the door and her daughter called 911, expecting paramedics to arrive.
But Fresno police arrived with nothing but their training and IQs to guide them, putting everybody else’s lives in danger.
Fresno police issued the following statement:
“This case is currently under Administrative Review. The review will include the examination of all the information pertaining to the officer’s contact including Body Worn Cameras.”
Ponce told ABC 7 the police officers need more training but they are behaving exactly as they are trained which is to control people, not help them. Below is a screenshot of Ponce’s Facebook post along with a screenshot from Transparent California. Watch the video below.