We see it at least one time or so a week. An autism spectrum disorder is related to.the crime an individual and for just a moment in time there is a negative connotation to those on the spectrum.
Often times this is not the case, but because it is immediately pointed out in criminal affidavits, then it is the nucleus of the story. However, having the diagnosis could contain many elements. Are they managed well with medication? Were they obsessed with something? Were there warning signs leading up to the event? The list goes on and on!
There are many individuals that committed major crimes like the Sandy Hook Elementary School Shooting Suspect Adam Lanza, the Aurora Theater Shooter, the list goes on and on. However with proper services across the board and regular obedience to rules and regulations diminishes the opportunity for negative law enforcement activity and the possibility to be charged with a crime.
I want to make something clear, any individual on the spectrum who has the ability to understand right from wrong should be taught this as soon as they understand what is. Especially for individuals on the higher end of the spectrum who possess intellect and the ability to understand and communicate effectively should by no reason use their disorder as a crutch to get out of something that they were a cause or culprit of. The proper skills should be taught as soon as the opportunity arises to do so that there is no issue brought forth in a negative way.
I had a few experiences with law enforcement in my past that makes me afraid of law enforcement activity to a degree. While these were with my parents, one specific one when was when I didn’t get something that I wanted from the store. I almost ended up in the psych ward that day, but it was with the grace of God and my Dad showing up that helped me not ending up there. With that being said, I must instill that we as individuals must be taught with how to cope when things don’t go our way, to gracefully accept and grow from that denial and prove that you can manage your symptoms so you don’t have those negative effects of the judicial system in an individuals life.
As such, being in a different neighborhood for almost a year now have had to see some not so nice things at a local playground over the past year when walking by it. Last year, wheelchair accessible playground equipment, the first in our county was installed. One-day there were teenagers abusing and snubbing their cigarettes on it. Knowing this was inappropriate, i just ignored it, but told my co-worker the next day. She abruptly asked me “Did you call 911?” I replied “no, I was afraid to” She gave a reply ” well, then you have no right to complain about it if you don’t do something about it. ”
Another incident occurred at this park last month when there was graffiti in a disturbing manner and broken glass strewn across the swing. I thought about it and decided to call the local police station and report it, i was a little apprehensive when they asked for my contact information, however I was assured by the law enforcement official that it couldn’t be used in a negative way.
I am lucky to have a mayor in our community that is active on social media with how citizens. He outlined that graffiti was more common and that calling the police is the right thing to do. When I explained my experience anonymously on the thread, he and others commended me for my efforts. More so, we have had a rash of vandalism citywide and he again took to those afraid of calling the police saying that criminal activity is harder to solve when it goes unreported, however these same individuals will bash the mayor on social media for not addressing the issue at hand.
In closing, individuals on the spectrum should if possible be taught right from wrong and to not have a negative connotation of law enforcement activity or officers, it can help the individual become more successful in the community and in life