The father of a 9-year-old autistic boy recorded police handcuffing and arresting his son at the child's elementary school after a playground fight that the father says was a result of bullying (video below).
Ronnie Shepperd was recording as police led away his young son. The boy can be heard sobbing in the video as police walk him out of Needham Elementary School in Franklin, Indiana.
"Just chill out buddy," Shepperd tells his son in the video. "You're leaving with me. I promise you."
The newly released video comes after charges of battery and criminal mischief against the boy have been dropped. The arrest occurred in August.
"He's watched the video several times. He still talks about it. He's pretty traumatized over the whole ordeal," Shepperd told WTRV. "Any 9-year-old that's being arrested, they don't know what's going on."
The school fight that led to the boy's arrest started as a result of his son standing up to a bully, according to Shepperd.
"Another student was bullying my son several times and he actually told the principal and a lot of staff members here who are in charge of recess about the bullying and they didn't take no steps to make it safe," he told WRTV.
The next time the bully hit his son, the boy fought back, according to Shepperd.
"Since he is autistic, he went into defense mode when he got hit so he hit a teacher after she broke up the fight," Shepperd told the Daily Mail. "But when he calmed down he said sorry to the teacher."
Another student who saw the fight told WRTV that Shepperd's son got in an argument with another boy over a butterfly.
"The kid went behind [the other boy] and pushed him down and then started choking him," the student said.
When a teacher came over to break up the fight, Shepperd's son jumped on the teacher's back and began choking her, according to the student. A second teacher was able to end the fight.
Franklin Schools Superintendent Dr. David Clendining told WRTV that the principal made the right decision to call police.
Based on advice from his attorney, Shepperd waited until after his son's case was dropped to release the video.
The boy has since moved schools, and his father says he's doing well.
"I decided it's time to post them. I think it's time to put it out there and let the public know what's happening in our schools," he said.