Fresno police released body camera footage from the officer who insisted on handcuffing an autistic teenager suffering an epileptic seizure inside the bathroom of a fast food joint last week.
The video shows Fresno police officer Rodney Zumkehr pulling into the parking lot of an El Pollo Loco restaurant and making his way into the bathroom where 16-year-old David Ramos had been suffering a seizure.
However, the teen, who was being held and comforted by his mother and sister, was no longer having the seizure.
Nevertheless, Zumkehr insisted on handcuffing him anyway and that is when the things escalated.
The teen began resisting, telling the cop he had done no wrong but all Zumkehr could say was “put your hands behind your back.”
Fresno police said the teen’s sister called 911 and said her brother was being “combative” which is why they had to handcuff him.
But the sister, Montserrat Ramos, also made it clear to the dispatcher that “he’s not hurting anyone.”
According to NBC News:
In the 911 call, made from an El Pollo Loco restaurant, the boy’s sister tells a dispatcher that her brother has been having seizures since the day before because he had been off his medication to undergo neurological testing.
“He’s jerking,” the sister says in the 911 call. She says she earlier gave him lorazepam, a drug used to treat seizure disorders.
Asked whether the teen is fighting, his sister tells the dispatcher: “He’s not hurting anyone. He’s trying to get out of the seizure.”
“Paramedics are on the way, don’t do CPR, hold onto him or put anything into his mouth,” the dispatcher says.
“Yes, I know,” the sister replies.
A little later, the sister reports that her brother has become “combative.” The boy can be heard wailing in the background.
An officer arrives, according to the 911 call, and the sister informs him, “He has autism. He has epilepsy.”
“The police officer is grabbing him and throwing him,” the sister suddenly tells the dispatcher. “Hold on, hold on, look, this is how you hold him,” she can be heard saying.
Although Fresno police released portions of the 911 call to local media, it does not appear as if any site has posted it yet.
Fresno police also released 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.”
David Ramos is still recovering at a local hospital but is now traumatized making it harder to treat him, his sister told local media.
Watch the video below.