Tybee police 'apologetic' for injuries incurred by Tased autistic teen

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TYBEE ISLAND, Ga. -- Tybee Island Police Chief James Price issued a statement Monday regarding his officers' Tasing of an autistic teen on the island Friday night.

Clifford Grevemberg says he was Tased twice by police and thrown to the ground, breaking one of his front teeth  Morris News Service
Morris News Service
Clifford Grevemberg says he was Tased twice by police and thrown to the ground, breaking one of his front teeth

Price also released the reports taken by officers in regard to Friday's incident. In one of the reports, the officer writes that 18-year-old Clifford Grevemberg said he had been drinking. Grevemberg says he was Tased twice and thrown to the ground, breaking one of his front teeth and leaving scrapes on his face and knee.

Read the incident report here.

Price's statement reads in part:

"I believe that the reports accurately portray what the officers involved were experiencing.  As you read them, please try to keep in mind the conditions under which the officers were working.  The area was the center of the activities that followed the end of the Beach Bum Parade, a rowdy, raucous event dominated by the consumption of adult beverages and disorderly activities.  The officers had no way of knowing that Mr. Grevemberg was autistic and unable to converse in a normally sociable manner with other adults.  He showed many of the characteristics of an intoxicated person.  He was a foot taller than both of the involved officers.  He became violent for no obvious reason.  The officer with the Taser ended the fight and prevented further injuries to Mr. Grevemberg and to the officers themselves.

"We are sincerely apologetic for the injuries suffered by Mr. Grevemberg.  We are also sorry that he was left unattended under the circumstances described above.  As his case finds its way through the justice system, we are certain the judge will take into account any and all mitigating circumstances in rendering his decision."

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wribbs
412
Points
wribbs 05/25/10 - 06:33 am
0
0
I hope he sues them into

I hope he sues them into oblivion. I was arrested in Tybee once for drunk and disorderly conduct. Boy was I hammered and disorderly. I had consumed a six pack of beer ALL DAY. The cop said he could tell I had been drinking so I was arrested. Oh the disorderly part was me loading beach chairs in my car while my wife waited in the DRIVER'S SEAT for me to get inside. Yeah I was out of control.

johnston.cliff
2
Points
johnston.cliff 05/25/10 - 07:13 am
0
0
The police have to deal with

The police have to deal with the situation as it exists. The autistic boy needs a keeper with him at all times when in public to protect him and those encountering him. The police response was obviously appropriate.

OnlyinAgs
1
Points
OnlyinAgs 05/25/10 - 07:30 am
0
0
Taser them then ask question

Taser them then ask question later and look stupid. So many GUNHO officers in the country. Exactly why I don't feel sorry for some that get caught in any situation.

augusta citizen
9070
Points
augusta citizen 10/19/12 - 09:49 am
0
0
..

..

beboisme
425
Points
beboisme 05/25/10 - 07:41 am
0
0
A Medical bracelet may have

A Medical bracelet may have been a good idea. Seems to me a Beach Bum parade might have been a bit too much activity for the young fella.

55 F-100
1
Points
55 F-100 05/25/10 - 07:47 am
0
0
The subject is eighteen years

The subject is eighteen years old, ergo, an adult. The subject became violent, ergo, he was tased. Any physical harm to the subject is the product of his becoming violent. No apology is warranted.

beboisme
425
Points
beboisme 05/25/10 - 08:14 am
0
0
55F-100 does this mean you

55F-100 does this mean you own one?

rmajor
8
Points
rmajor 05/25/10 - 08:45 am
0
0
Excuses! So...conditions of

Excuses! So...conditions of being in a social setting where alcohol is consumed is reason enough to say..."Oh he's tall and there is something wrong with him and he might hurt one of us so let's tackle him and tase him." He said...he said he had been drinking? Not the obvious take a breatherlizer test or smell alchohol on him? He became violent for no reason...ok....someone attacks me...no reason to not like it....Oh don't forget...it's the parents fault...they left him unattended like he is 2, so we have the right to have a testosterone rush under these circumstances...man, he's 1 foot taller than us. Sue! Sue! Sue!

dixierose1218
0
Points
dixierose1218 05/25/10 - 08:47 am
0
0
Per the original story, the

Per the original story, the 18 yr old had his brother with him. The brother had gone into an establishment, that the young man couldnt get into, in order to get some food for them before they left for their home. An autistic person much less anyone else can be watched every second of every minute. Autistic people want to have some freedom as well and can do well when not agitated. When they become agitated, they can act out because they dont fully understand some situations.

As far as the medical ID bracelet/necklace, I am a mother of an autistic child and have yet to find a medical ID bracelet that states he has autism. Plus you would have to be close enough to read the ID bracelet.

I have never seen an autistic person look to be drunk or disorderly. Heck any person can be disorderly but you can not treat people this way at all.

corgimom
31005
Points
corgimom 05/25/10 - 08:54 am
0
0
"The area was the center of

"The area was the center of the activities that followed the end of the Beach Bum Parade, a rowdy, raucous event dominated by the consumption of adult beverages and disorderly activities."

Did you notice that his autism didn't get in the way of him attending a parade that is rowdy and raucous?

And when someone gets violent, are the police just supposed to stand there and be assaulted?

So now the Tybee police are supposed to be psychic?

How about if he was so autistic that he wouldn't be able to cope with a legal police command, the brother should've found another place to get food- one that didn't require him leaving his brother?

Do you notice that he can give an interview to a reporter but can't obey a police command?

grinder48
1877
Points
grinder48 05/25/10 - 09:08 am
0
0
This is a terribly sad event
Unpublished

This is a terribly sad event but there's ABSOLUTELY no doubt that the police had no way of knowing the person was autistic, they did everything EXACTLY as they should have done, and the ENTIRE FAULT lies with the brother who left him unattended ... which was especially short-sighted and irresponsible given the time and place and other circumstances involved in this case. No rational judge should find fault with the police in this case.

afskyefan
0
Points
afskyefan 05/25/10 - 09:24 am
0
0
1. Before police officers

1. Before police officers receive certification to use a Taser most states, or departments require them to be tased. The same standard applies to the use of pepper spray. They know what it feels like and they are not gung-ho to use either one on another person.

2. There are many levels of autism. This man was capable of attending this parade. He gave an interview to a reporter. There does not seem to be any immediate way the officers could have known he was autistic.

3. Police officers are not looking to wrestle with people. Any perceived threat to the officer or another person is to be handled with the least amount of force appropriate that will remove that threat without endangering the officer or others. Non-compliance with directives is resistance. Getting into a wrestling match with this person could have cause him or one of the officers severe injuries.

4. He was underage and drinking alcohol. Has his brother been arrested yet?

30cal
0
Points
30cal 05/25/10 - 10:25 am
0
0
OH WELL ! I TRYED

OH WELL ! I TRYED

balceroregontr
0
Points
balceroregontr 05/25/10 - 12:00 pm
0
0
Tasers are used too readily

Tasers are used too readily these days. The chief does not say he smelled of alcohol just that he said he was drinking. There are several medical conditions that can lead a person to be disoriented and unresponsive to police questions. I support police officers but find that since tasers are now issued they are used as a first response instead of a last response. The officers acted under the assumption that the man was drunk instead of assessing the situation. Shame on them.

stillamazed
1488
Points
stillamazed 05/25/10 - 01:35 pm
0
0
Dixie Rose, I have a grandson

Dixie Rose, I have a grandson with a form of autism and while I can sympathize with you and understand how you feel, you have to also understand the situation that the police have no idea in a situation like that that this young man was autistic, they had no way of knowing and they did what they felt was right under the circumstances. The young man became violent and even though a person is autistic they still cannot be allowed to become dangerous to themselves or others around them. The brother should have watched him or better yet perhaps he should have had more help watching him and this may have been avoided. I do not fault the police in this case.

baronvonreich
0
Points
baronvonreich 05/25/10 - 02:02 pm
0
0
Actions have consequences. If

Actions have consequences. If you don't want tased then comply with the instructions of law enforcement. If you have a medical condition then don't go out in public alone. It is called personal responsibility.

KatieLou
0
Points
KatieLou 05/25/10 - 07:29 pm
0
0
So the kid gets a new front

So the kid gets a new front tooth and has a war story to tell. Big deal. His brother is absolutely right: it's his fault this happened. If this guy can't handle talking to the police on his own, he can't handle being left alone on a street corner.

Live and learn... and quit bellyaching about the cops for doing their job.

gaspringwater
3
Points
gaspringwater 05/25/10 - 09:42 pm
0
0
The situation sounds like two

The situation sounds like two cops were cursing the crowd and spot a guy who looks suspicious. The suspicious guy hasn't harmed anyone, not made a scene, and don't smell of alcohol either. But he doesn't respond to the officer's commands and that's good enough in their opinion to hit him with the teaser. Because he's bigger than they are. Sounds like they were off base and the guy just needs a good lawyer and justice in court. Mounting evidence suggest police are overdoing the teasers and causing deaths.

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