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Florida man shot by police while assisting autistic man

Posted: 6:51 PM, Jul 20, 2016
Updated: 2016-07-21 09:11:33-04

Cell phone video shows a Florida man lying on the ground with his hands in the air moments before he was shot by a police officer.

WVSN  reported that Charles Kinsey was shot by North Miami Police on Monday and was transported to a local hospital with non-life threatening injuries. Cell phone video obtained by the station appears to show Kinsey attempting to communicate the situation to police with his hands in the air moments before he was shot.

Police were called to the scene on Monday after receiving reports of an armed man threatening suicide, police told WVSN. The officers confronted Kinsey and the patient he was assisting. 

However, Kinsey and his attorneys told WVSN that neither were armed, and that officers mistook the autistic patient’s toy truck for a weapon.

Cell phone video from the scene shows Kinsey lying on the ground in the air, attempting to tell officers that the man’s toy truck was not a weapon.

“All he has is a toy truck in his hand. A toy truck. I am a behavior therapist at a group home,” Kinsey is heard saying.

Later, a North Miami Police Officer fired his weapon, leaving Kinsey with injuries significant enough to require medical attention.

“I’m saying ‘Sir, why did you shoot me?’ and his [the officer’s] words to me were, ‘I don’t know,'” Kinsey said to WVSN.

The North Miami Police  told WVSN that an investigation into the shooting remains ongoing, and the officer that fired the weapon has been placed on administrative leave.

Alex Hider is a writer for the E.W. Scripps National Desk. Follow him on Twitter @alexhider.