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Cop Shoots 13-Year-Old Boy Suffering Mental Episode

Police said they were told he made threats with a weapon; mother disputes that
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 8, 2020 7:52 AM CDT

(Newser) – Salt Lake City police received a call about a boy having a "psychological episode" before an officer shot the boy multiple times. "No matter the circumstances, what happened on Friday night is a tragedy," Mayor Erin Mendenhall said Sunday, as the boy was listed in serious condition in a hospital. She added an investigation into the shooting would be "handled swiftly and transparently for the sake of everyone involved." Sgt. Keith Horrocks said police were called just after 10pm to a home where a boy was suffering a "mental episode … and had made threats to some folks with a weapon," per the Salt Lake Tribune. The boy—identified by family as 13-year-old Linden Cameron—ran from police before an officer opened fire. A GoFundMe page claims Linden was left "with injuries to his shoulder, both ankles, intestines, and bladder."

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No weapon was found Friday, per the Tribune. That's because Linden didn't have a weapon, according to his mother, Golda Barton. She said she called police, asking for a crisis intervention team, because her son was in need of help. He has autism, Asperger's, and severe separation anxiety, and Friday was Barton's first day back at work in almost a year, per KUTV and KJZZ. When officers arrived, "I said, 'He's unarmed. He doesn't have anything. He just gets mad and he starts yelling and screaming,'" Barton told KUTV. She's left wondering why police didn't use less-lethal methods on the "small child." She suggested officers could've just tackled him. Police have refused to comment further, saying more information will be shared by Sept. 21. Body-camera footage must be released by that date under a city ordinance. (Read more police shooting stories.)

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