A Frederick County support group is urging increased police training related to developmental disabilities after a man with down syndrome died in police custody.
The group Friends of Frederick County said that people with down syndrome may have skeletal structures that could put them at greater risk of unintentional harm. "What might be some good ways to approach them when you are in a situation or they are being challenged by society, somehow, could end up in a much better outcome," said Bob Walsh, Vice President of the Family Resource Information and Education Network for Down Syndrome.
Group President Denny Weikert says those characteristics could increase the risk of harm from lying face down with one's hands behind one's back.
The Frederick County Sheriff's Office says 26 year old Robert Ethan Saylor ended up on the floor after a struggle with three deputies who had handcuffed him while trying to forcibly remove him from a Frederick movie theater on Jan. 12.
The State Medical Examiner's Office has ruled the death a homicide.