US cops shoot 13-year-old autistic boy
PIC: Wikimedia

A 13-year-old Utah boy with autism was shot by police after his mother asked for help getting him hospital mental-health treatment and officers agreed to talk with him, police footage released Monday showed.

The videos show Salt Lake City officers chasing him down an alley after they arrive at his home, then yelling at him to get on the ground.

The boy collapses after a series of shots ring out, moaning, "I don't feel good. I don't feel good." He survived but suffered broken bones and pierced organs, the family's attorney has said.

His mother, Golda Barton, had warned police that her son said earlier that day, September 4, that he had a gun and had threatened to shoot her male coworker and break windows in the house, the video showed.

But she told officers she thought it was a BB gun or pellet gun. There were no indications he was armed.

She wanted him to be hospitalised for help with his mental health issues.

Officers said they would have to proceed as though the boy did have access to a real gun, the videos show. Barton told officers the boy was "triggered" by seeing police.

"He sees the badge and he automatically thinks you are going to kill him or he has to defend himself in some way," she said.

"He freaks out."

The video was made public under a Salt Lake City ordinance requiring the release of video from police shootings within 10 business days.

The shooting has raised new questions about how police deal with people with mental health issues amid nationwide calls for police reform.

In one video, two officers can be heard discussing whether or not to approach the boy because they were concerned that the incident would result in a shooting.

"Especially when he hates cops, it's probably gonna end in a shooting," one officer said.

As officers approach the house, one says he can see movement in the backyard.

The officers start to run after the boy - yelling at him to stop and get on the ground. When they catch up to the boy, they ask him to get on the ground again.

The boy ignores their commands and continues walking before a series of shots ring out.

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