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Video: N.M. SRO Handcuffed Autistic Boy

November 28, 2011  | 

VIDEO: Albuquerque Student Handcuffed

An Albuquerque Public Schools officer who used handcuffs on an autistic 7-year-old has been placed on paid leave, and the incident has sparked a debate about how to restrain children.

Here's an excerpt from the Albuquerque Journal's report:

The incident at Mary Ann Binford Elementary earlier this month lasted more than two hours, beginning when the boy began acting out in class, calling other students names and disobeying.

But the situation escalated steadily, to the point that the student ran from his classroom, kicked and punched a social worker, flipped over chairs and spit on the floor. When the officer arrived two hours into the incident, she tried to calm the boy, but he began shooting rubber bands at her and kicking her, according to her report. After warning him to stop, she put him in handcuffs.

Superintendent Winston Brooks has condemned the officer's actions and Bernalillo County Sheriff Dan Houston revoked her law enforcement commission.

Watch the KOB news report here.

Comments (8)

Displaying 1 - 8 of 8

Jackjumpin @ 11/29/2011 8:27 AM

I am sorry but two hours this child was throwing a tantrum (chairs, books, and everything else) and staff could not stop him. SRO restrains the child in a way that has worked for years now she is on admin leave. The school Superintendent, (obviously a Penn State grad) says the sit a squirrelly child in your lap, wrap your arms around them, and hold them until the child calms down. Just how would that look when someone (with a camcorder) walks up on the scene? Explain this technique while facing child molestation charges. Sheriff think about the safety of your deputies. If she would have slipped on one of the pencils or a crayon and injured herself while trying to restrain the little fireball and file an L&I claim would you say she did not follow procedure and therefore have no claim? The mother gave permission to restrain her child, so do not whine about it, heck she may want to consider getting herself a pair of cuffs (just kidding) they seem to have worked.

Jolena Lomax @ 11/29/2011 9:11 AM

Holding a squirleely child in your lap while wrapping your arms around them is the safe and proper procedure, until the child calms down. It is not important what others think at the time ( a person with a camera , molestor accusers). The proceedure is in place because the child needs to be comforted, restrained, and you need to keep yourself and other students in the room safe ALL AT THE SAME TIME. Only uniformed or lowly thinking people will have molestation in mind.

Laura @ 11/29/2011 12:17 PM

Without being trained to hold a squirrelly child the officer did what she had been trained to do. If it's inappropriate to handcuff the child then officers need to be trained.
When I was in the Army many years ago I held a drunk friend in a similar manner once while waiting for an ambulance to do an EPS. She was slamming her fists into windows and also cutting her face with the broken glass, thus harming herself. I held her wrists and wrapped my legs around her's pinning her. After going through detox she cussed me out for saving her life. Oh Well.

maleman39 @ 11/29/2011 1:42 PM

Handcuffs on a 7 yr old? Unbelievable. Apparently the quality of common sense is not strained. What's next?

John @ 11/29/2011 3:47 PM

I suppose next they'll be telling officers on the street that they have to hold squirrelly drug dealers and homicidal maniacs in their arms until they calm down. The situation is disorderly conduct. The officer acted appropriately in my opinion and the child is lucky he didn't get slapped with a fine. Whatever happened to personal responsibility? Autism isn't new, and before it became the rage in deadbeat parenting circles to blame on others, such children were held accountable for their actions and behaved accordingly. For the record, my nephew is autistic and, because his parents are good enough to develop some discipline for him, he is very well-behaved, even for the difficulties he faces in his day to day life.

DaveSAM25G @ 11/29/2011 10:03 PM

There are two sides to this story...many schools have a specified room for these occasions separation from other's and space. I would ask a few things first of Mr. Brooks APS Sup...Negative contact for two hours mother is information up to date and current? When contacted she said it was ok to use restraints but never asked what type restraints would be used why, they did ask permission to restrain?...How much training does this officers get in this area is it documented in training records and what tools are the patrols provided in the form of restraints other than what was used...I would say rather than blame clarify the procedures - a blog writer caught a process he said was valid which was long since discontinued...APS does not have an ORI so therefore they are commissioned through the SO...The Sheriff has brought up concerns and training before with Mr. Brooks and the media turned it into an agenda...I am sorry if I were sheriff (buck stops on my desk for my department and I commission you I am also potentially liable if something happens due Diligence comes to mind so you’re not sued for any indifference civil...Who would be held responsible had the young boy hurt anyone seriously? Would SRO take heat again for failure to act or restrain? If an APS police SOP was violated than that's for APS police Chief to deal with and follow-up with sheriff!!

Jolena Lomax @ 12/1/2011 11:54 PM

This is why law enforcement and/ or the community need to be trained . I have a BS in Criminal Justice & I work with the disabled population. It is a very touchy subject with precise mannerisms. We are currently working on funding that will train law enforcement for these types of calls. Please visit ...or This day program for the disabled is determined to address this problem. The proceeds for this event will help train law enforcement, & the community so that no disabled person will loose thier life ( Kelly Thomas of Fullerton, CA & Mitrese Richardson of Los Angeles for example). On December 10, 2011 at Lynwood High School. If you want to make a donation to the cause please visit the website or email me @ [email protected]

Amos-mnicah mccormick @ 3/15/2012 5:25 PM

the officer should keep lisence and the student was way out of line he was wrong he attacked the officer and the officer lost her leo commition what the hell the truth the child and the childs parents should be in jail for the disruption to the classroom setting the security was at risk so the officer acted appropriatly thank you to the officer thank you for doing your job

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