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‘This as a tragic, tragic, event’: 13-year-old boy with autism shot by police in Salt Lake City

The mother of 13-year-old Linden Cameren, Golda Barton, told NBC affiliate KSL she called police last Friday night to ask for an officer trained for situations involving mental health to help because her son was having trouble.
The mother of 13-year-old Linden Cameren, Golda Barton, told NBC affiliate KSL she called police last Friday night to ask for an officer trained for situations involving mental health to help because her son was having trouble. (NBC News)

(NBC NEWS) – Nearly a week after the police shooting that wounded a 13-year-old Salt Lake City boy with autism, Salt Lake City’s police chief has commented on the case.

The mother of 13-year-old Linden Cameren, Golda Barton, told NBC affiliate KSL she called police last Friday night to ask for an officer trained for situations involving mental health to help because her son was having trouble. He has autism and Asperger’s syndrome, she said.

Barton wasn’t at home at the time, but was driving toward her neighborhood when she called 911 from the car.

“I explained to them he’s upset. He’s having an episode, he needs to go to the hospital,” said Barton.

According to Salt Lake City police, when they got the call, they were asked to respond to a report of a “juvenile” having a “violent psychological issue.” Police have said when they came into contact with Cameren, he ran.

Barton did not see what happened, but she could hear it.

“I heard the guns and the yelling and the guns, and then I sat there in my car for what felt like a long time and I was waiting for someone to walk over to me because I didn’t know what just happened,” Barton said.

Police Chief Mike Brown could not confirm the sequence of events, pointing to three separate investigations both inside and outside the Salt Lake City Police Department that will determine the facts.

When pressed about transparency with the use of force, Brown said while he couldn’t offer more details yet, the department would release video from the shooting of the teen within 10 business days.

“I think that’s a big step in transparency, and then following that, as these investigations unfold, we will — we will inform the public as to the findings, and we hope that this goes very swiftly,” Brown said.

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