Autistic Teen Physically Attacked During Cross-Country Meet

By Charise Frazier

Chase Coleman, a 15-year-old Black autistic teen from Syracuse, New York, loved running on his high school’s cross-country team until a physical attack on October 14 quelled his passion. According to witness accounts and a police report obtained by The Washington Post, Chase was running in the middle of the road when Martin MacDonald, a White 57-year-old man, got out of his car, pushed Chase to the ground and yelled, “Get out of here.”

Rochester cops revisit attack on Syracuse teen runner with autism

— (@syracusedotcom) October 31, 2016

Chase’s mother, Clarise Coleman, told The Post she became anxious when she didn’t see her son cross the finish line. Coleman said she usually scouts the running trails beforehand, pointing out areas where he may get lost or turned around.

As she ran the trail looking for Chase, she discovered a woman who pointed her in the direction of a runner who was assaulted. The victim turned out to be Chase.

A cyclist who helped him after the attack gave Coleman the grueling details, confirming her worst fears. When she asked Chase where he was hurt, he responded, “back,” The Post writes.

“I see a grown man, who is quite tall and fairly heavy … exit the vehicle and give this young man a shove that puts him back 10 feet and flat on his butt,” Van Metter, the cyclist witness, said to “Like, just shoved him across the road. The kid didn’t seem to be doing anything but standing there, obviously had nothing in his hands and weighed all of 130 pounds. This guy was easily twice that,” he continued. reports that when police questioned MacDonald, he told an officer, “He thought Chase was going to mug his wife and take …read more