- On Friday night, Salt Lake City police shot a 13-year-old boy with Asperger’s in the back during a mental health crisis
- Cameron’s mother, Golda Barton, called police for assistance transporting him to the hospital
- According to Barton, police arrived and shot Cameron in the back within five minutes of arriving on the scene
- Cameron was taken to the hospital in serious condition and is said to have sustained injuries to his shoulder, both ankles, intestines, and bladder
- In January, Cameron’s grandfather, Owen Barton, was shot by deputies from the Lyon County Sheriff’s Office in Nevada
- Three deputies were suspended following Owen’s death but the LCSO has yet to release the body camera footage or reveal the results of the investigation
Linden Cameron, a 13-year-old boy with Asperger’s, is currently recovering in the hospital after being shot by Salt Lake City police on Friday night in Glendale during a mental health crisis.
Cameron’s mother, Golda Barton, said she called the police and requested a crisis intervention team (CIT). Barton told dispatchers her son with Asperger’s was having a mental breakdown and needed to be transported to the hospital. She explained to police that she had returned to work for the first time in almost a year. Barton had not been at work due to Cameron’s separation anxiety.
“I said, he’s unarmed, he doesn’t have anything, he just gets mad and he starts yelling and screaming. He’s a kid he’s trying to get attention, he doesn’t know how to regulate,” Barton told KUTV2. Two officers responded to the call and told Barton to stay outside. Cameron was scared and attempted to run from the officers. Barton says within five minutes she heard “get down on the ground” then multiple gunshots.
According to Salt Lake City Police Sgt. Keith Horrocks, officers responded to a “violent psych issue” involving Cameron. Cameron was said to be “having a mental episode” and “making threats to some folks with weapons.” Horrocks did not specify who Cameron allegedly threatened with a weapon. “During a short foot pursuit, an officer discharged his firearm and hit the subject,” Horrocks said.
On Tuesday, the Salt Lake City Police Department released the following statement:
We wanted to provide an update regarding the tragic situation involving the shooting of a juvenile. We are thankful no lives were lost in this incident. Each time there is an officer-involved critical incident in Salt Lake County the officer-involved critical incident protocol is invoked. A protocol team made up of officers from multiple agencies with no ties to the Salt Lake City Police Department conducts an independent investigation. We are cooperating fully with the protocol team assigned to this case.
Salt Lake City Police Department
This is an active and open investigation being conducted by Protocol Team 3 and the District Attorney’s office. The City’s Civilian Review Board and our own Internal Affairs will also conduct parallel separate investigations. As this is an active investigation, we do not anticipate having any further updates until the release of the body-worn camera footage, which occurs within 10 business days from the incident.
Cameron was seriously injured during the surgery and is expected to survive. He suffered injuries to his shoulder, both ankles, intestines, and bladder. Mayor Erin Mendenhall has called for the investigation to be handled “swiftly and transparently for the sake of everyone involved.”
While the full details of this incident are yet to be released as an investigation takes place, I will say that I am thankful this young boy is alive and no one else was injured. No matter the circumstances, what happened on Friday night is a tragedy and I expect this investigation to be handled swiftly and transparently for the sake of everyone involved.Mayor Erin Mendenhall
The shooting of Cameron is the second police shooting the family has experienced in less than eight months. Cameron’s grandfather, Owen Barton, was shot and killed in Nevada by deputies with the Lyon County Sheriff’s Office on January 16. According to the LCSO, Owen’s neighbor called police after he came to his house and threatened him with a handgun. Deputies contacted Owen and claim he refused to comply with instructions, which included putting his hands up. Deputies claim Owen advanced on them and pulled his gun, at which he was fatally shot.
On January 29, Barton posted Owen’s obituary to her Facebook. The caption with the link read, “Thank you to those who have reached out to support me and give a kind word. My dad would have never believed he touched so many lives and what a wonderful way to remember him.”
On January 30, Barton made another post and shared almost two dozens pictures of her father. The caption with the post read, “Missing my dad tonight. Hoping my mom is with him and he is at peace. Owen Barton Tribute Saturday 1pm south of wilson canyon on the right hand side.”
Three deputies were suspended following Owen’s death. The LCSO has not released the body camera footage nor the results of the investigation. Lyon County Sheriff Frank Hunewill has said he delayed releasing the footage to avoid possibly compromising the investigation or influencing the decision of the district attorney’s office.
Lyon County and Yerington law enforcement began implementing body cameras in 2018. Both the LCSO and the Yerington Police Department announced earlier this year they would not be following the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office and Reno and Sparks police departments’ policy of releasing body camera footage within two weeks of an officer-involved shooting. Hunewill claimed the LCSO does not have the “resources” to follow such a policy.