Anthony Corona died after being placed with his head between his legs for twelve minutes. In the aftermath, the coronor at least partially blamed autism for his death.
Following a physical confrontation with another student and after school employees’ attempts to restrain Corona failed, the bus driver pushed the teen’s shoulders down, forcing his head between his legs, for 12 minutes until he stopped breathing, a San Bernardino police report stated. He died in the hospital a short time later, officials said.
Authorities concluded the death was a homicide, which means “death at the hands of another, but not necessarily implying intent or culpability,” states a coroner’s report provided by the family’s attorney Dale Nowicki. His death resulted from “positional asphyxia,” meaning he was put in a position where he couldn’t breathe for several minutes, according to the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department Coroner Division and San Bernardino police Lt. Mike Madden. Corona’s autism and mental retardation contributed to his death, a coroner’s report states.
I’m looking for the actual report, but this trend of blaming a diagnosis, rather than the violence visited on the disabled body, is both pernicious and pervasive. This kind of restraint is lethal far too often to far too many people, and in the aftermath, medical and law enforcement authorities fixate on the disability rather than the action (even should the action be justified). See both Ethan Saylor and Eric Garner for widely publicized examples.
More to come.