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Clifton Police Officer Rescues Boy With Autism, 15, From Brook

Weasel Brook Park
Weasel Brook Park Photo Credit: COURTESY: County of Passaic

CLIFTON, N.J. -- A Clifton police officer rescued a 15-year-old boy with autism who'd jumped into a brook Sunday night.

Using his training, Officer Thomas Buell "positioned himself at the edge of the water" at Weasel Brook Park around 8:45 p.m. and began communicating with the boy, Detective Lt. Robert Bracken said.

"After several minutes, Officer Buell was able to establish a rapport with the child," Bracken said.

Eventually, the officer got the boy to approach and give him a high five.

Police then escorted him to his mother.

"Understanding the techniques in being able to interact with persons with autism in the most effective ways is something that the department continues to focus on," Bracken said.

Buell, he said, "exemplifies this goal, having done an outstanding job in handling this incident."

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