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Charles Kinsey was shot by North Miami police on Monday (July 18) as he tried to help his autistic patient.
Kinsey, a caretaker and behavioral therapist, was trying to retrieve the 23-year-old young man who'd wandered away from an assisted living group home, and was sitting in a roadway, playing with a toy truck, and blocking traffic.
However, the North Miami Police Department claimed they were responding to a 911 call about a man walking around with a gun threatening to commit suicide. According to CNN, North Miami police Chief Gary Eugene told reporters on Thursday, "Our officers responded to the scene with that threat in mind. We had witness statements that there was a gun. We had a 911 call with that same information. However, I want to make it clear, there was no gun recovered."
But still, Kinsey was shot in his right leg after an officer fired a gun three times. He was then flipped over, handcuffed, and left bleeding for "about 20 minutes" before an ambulance arrived, according to Kinsey's retelling to Miami's CNN affiliate WSVN.
North Miami police said the officer opened fire from his after attempting to negotiate.
But surfaced cellphone footage shows Kinsey obeying police orders to lie down. In one video, taken before the officer fires his assault rifle, Kinsey can be seen on his back with his hands in the air telling police (1:22), "All he has is a toy truck.". He can also be seen trying to reason with his patient (1:52): "Ronaldo, please be still. Rinaldo, sit down. Rinaldo, lay on your stomach." Another video, taken after the shooting, shows Kinsey being handcuffed.
Kinsey told WSVN, "As long as I've got my hands up, they're not gonna shoot me, that's what I'm thinking. Wow, was I wrong."
"I'm like this right here," Kinsey recounted to WSVN, with his arms in the air. "And when he shot me, it was so surprising. I thought it was a mosquito bite. And when it hit me, I had my hands in the air. And I'm thinking, 'I just got shot!' And I'm saying, 'Sir, why did you shoot me?' And his words to me were, 'I don’t know.'"
The officer who shot Kinsey has been placed on administrative leave, and an investigation is underway.
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