UK police to take ‘no further action’ in ‘criminal investigation’ into autistic girl who said officer looked like a lesbian
On Friday, West Yorkshire Police announced that it was dropping charges on a 16-year-old autistic girl who was brutally arrested earlier this week when a female officer accused her of "homophobia" after she allegedly said, "I think she's a lesbian" about the officer.
In a statement posted to Social Media police said it "has now reviewed the evidence and made the decision to take no further action." The statement added, "This concludes the criminal investigation and immediately releases the girl from her bail. Her family has been updated."
“We recognize the significant level of public concern that this incident has generated, and we have moved swiftly to fully review the evidence in the criminal investigation which has led to the decision to take no further action," Assistant Chie Constable Oz Khan said. "Without pre-empting the outcome of the ongoing review of the circumstances by our Professional Standards Directorate, we would like to reassure people that we will take on board any lessons to be learned from this incident."
“We do appreciate the understandable sensitivities around incidents involving young people and neurodiversity and we are genuinely committed to developing how we respond to these often very challenging situations," he concluded.
The incident took place on August 8, when the girl was arrested on "suspicion of homophobic public order offense." The mother of the girl, who goes by Nikita Snow on social media, said that her two daughters were out when the 16-year-old Amanda began to act in "unsafe ways," and needed a safe escort home so her older daughter called the police to help.
"They said they would come to assist in getting her home as she is vulnerable, with her being diagnosed with autism," Snow said. When police arrived at the house with the girls "They said they were just bringing her home safely."
She said, "One of the officers had hold of Amanda and was squeezing her arm very tightly. She asked me to get [the officer] off her arm as it was hurting so I guided my daughter inside." On her way into the house, Snow said Amanda remarked, "I think she’s a lesbian like nanna Julie."
This caused the officer to launch herself into the home after the young girl. "She was grabbing her," Snow said. This caused Amanda to hide in the cupboard crying "and saying sorry to the policewoman."
Police ignored Snow's pleas explaining that her daughter has autism, and arrested the girl.
At the time, video of the instance exploded on the internet, with users pointing out that this is what happens with "hate speech legislation."