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WATCH: South Carolina police accused of Tasering man with severe autism on Christmas Eve

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A South Carolina woman has filed a complaint with the Greenville City Police Department after officers Tasered and then arrested her autistic 34-year-old son on Christmas Eve after he attempted to avoid them, reports WYFF.

According to Carolyn Anderson, her son, Tario, has a severe form of autism rendering him almost incapable of speaking.

“Tario can say yes or no, he might ask for a thing or two, but just verbal, no,” Carolyn Anderson explained.

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Right before midnight on Christmas Eve, Greenville police responded to a call about gunshots in the neighborhood when they spotted and attempted to detain Tario as he walked on the street near his home. According to his mother, her son frequently goes for walks in the evening, visiting family members who live in the neighborhood.

Police say when they spotted him on the street he attempted to walk away from them.

“When they put their spotlight on him, he immediately put his head down, put his hands in his pockets and began to walk away from him,” Officer Johnathan Bragg with Greenville Police said. “They then got out of the vehicle and approached him and ordered him to stop at which point he did flee from the officers and they pursued him.”

After police caught up with Anderson they used Tasers on him in order to take him into custody.

Neighbors familiar with Tario — who has lived his entire life in the same neighborhood– heard him yelling as the police attempted to subdue him and they immediately called his mother.

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“If you had seen my baby was out there, laying on that sidewalk and every time he reached for me, I reached for him- [they’d say] “Get back, we gonna Tase you”,” Carolyn Anderson said. “I was trying to make them take me to jail. I curse everything, ‘Take me! I’m the one causing trouble! Take me. He’s not doing nothing.’ No matter what I said, it didn’t make no difference to them.”

According to Officer Bragg, officers were not aware of Anderson’s disability, but that he still broke the law when he attempted to flee.

“From what he did, he did break the law so in any case like that, we do go ahead and arrest them and make the charges and we’re not deemed certified to declare anyone as mentally ill or with a disease or anything like that so we don’t technically know if he is,” Bragg said.

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Following his arrest, Anderson was treated on the scene by paramedics before being taken to a detention center where he was charged with interfering with police and resisting arrest.

Carolyn Anderson, who said her son has never been arrested before, was outraged.

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“Interfering? Resisting? It’s against the law to take off running? I still don’t understand. I really don’t,” she said. “I say if you hear gunshots, are you going to stand there and wait to see if the bullet hit you or are you getting out the way?”

Bragg later released a statement saying that police are looking into the Anderson complaint, but added that “members of the public need to be cooperative with police when stopped.”

Tario Anderson is expected back in court Jan. 9.

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Watch the video below, uploaded to YouTube by WYFF:


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2020 Election

Trump and the GOP have become the party of the dead

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There are few morbid topics subject to greater speculation than the religious loyalty of President Donald Trump's "base." Why an alarmingly large amount of Americans refuse even to entertain any criticism of Trump deserves scrutiny from political scientists, psychologists and perhaps horror novelists working in the school of Edgar Allan Poe.

This article first appeared in Salon.

What is abundantly clear is that no matter who votes for Trump, he and the Republican Party on the national level have no interest in governing on the behalf of living human beings — with the exception of ensuring that a tiny minority of billionaires and multimillionaires enlarge their investment portfolios. Trump evinces no concern for Americans dying of the coronavirus, racist violence or any other malady or injustice. He demonstrates no regard for health care professionals courageously trying to save their patients from dying, and appears cruelly indifferent to the struggles of millions of workers whose livelihoods have been destroyed by COVID-19. Needless to say, Trump also shows contempt for Black Lives Matter, immigrants and anyone who opposes his re-election, which at this moment (and throughout his presidency) is more than half of the American public.

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As coronavirus seizes the state, Florida hospitals are in panic mode

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As Florida experiences a surge in coronavirus cases, the residents of the state are facing obstacles like overwhelmed hospitals and a looming shortage in beds.

This article first appeared in Salon.

There are 47,663 hospital beds in the state right now with 11,782 available (meaning a remaining capacity of 19.82 percent) and a total staffed bed capacity of 59,445, according to the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration's Hospital Bed Capacity Dashboard. The state Department of Health also reported on Friday that, out of 95,300 individuals who received coronavirus test results over the course of the previous day, 11,433 tested positive for COVID-19 (all but 90 of whom were Florida residents), meaning that more than 12 percent of the new cases had positive test results. The state also reported 93 new deaths due to COVID-19. (Salon reached out to the Florida Department of Health for comment on this story.)

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2020 Election

The GOP is a suicide cult

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Welcome to another edition of What Fresh Hell?, Raw Story’s roundup of news items that might have become controversies under another regime, but got buried – or were at least under-appreciated – due to the daily firehose of political pratfalls, unhinged tweet storms and other sundry embarrassments coming out of the current White House.

Back in March, we argued that Donald Trump had become the charismatic leader of the dumbest suicide cult ever. There were fewer than 500 confirmed cases of Covid-19 at the time, but it wasn't difficult to see the trajectory we were on at even that early date. At the time, we were commenting on the President's* repeated claims that the whole thing was a big hoax and polls showing that Democrats were twice as likely as Republicans to say they were taking steps to avoid becoming infected.

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