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Hays, KS — Joseph Nathaniel Weber, 36, was described by the community and his family as a person full of life and excitement. However, on Thursday, that life was taken from him by a Hays police officer. During a traffic stop last week, Weber, who had autism, was shot and killed.

Known to family as Joey, Weber was an upstanding member of the community who learned to embrace his autism, allowing him to lead a happy and mostly normal life. Weber was employed at Joe Bob Outfitters and a member of Knights of Columbus at his church.

Weber was also a participant of New Age Services which provides activities and services to members of the community with mental disabilities — like Weber. Throughout their Facebook page, Weber is seen participating and many different events. The owner of New Age Services provides jobs to those with mental disabilities at his company, Joe Bob Outfitters — where Weber worked.

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So how could a kind, loving, and harmless man with autism, who’s had no previous run-ins with police, be gunned down in cold blood?

According to Ellis County Attorney, Thomas Drees, they don’t know.

“Did the man threaten police? I’m not going to comment on that, obviously, there was an escalation to the point where a shot was fired and he was killed,” said Drees, as reported by KSN.

According to a release from the Ellis County Attorney’s Office, as reported by KSN, Weber was stopped for an unknown traffic infraction and failed to obey the officer’s commands. As additional officers were called, he drove off and headed toward to Timber Drive.

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Timber Drive happens to be the street on which New Age Services is located. As he was startled by the officers, it is apparent Weber tried to make it to a safe space; somewhere he knew he would be okay.

However, when he got out of the car again, according to police, he did not obey their commands. However, according to his family, Weber’s autism has left him with very low verbal skills and it is possible that he simply had no idea what to do.

When someone with autism is yelled at, or experiences bright lights, loud noise, and highly stressful situations, they tend to break down. Weber was most likely going through this when police opened fire. He died at the scene.

A woman who lives next to the New Age Services home, and who witnessed some of the event, said she’s had interactions with Weber before, and they’ve been pleasant.

Weber was killed in broad daylight, in front of the place that made him feel safe.

The only details released by police so far have been the fact that none of the officers have body cameras and the patrol cars may or may not have had dash cameras.

Authorities remain tight-lipped on the details of Weber’s death five days after he was killed.

However, the case seems cut and dry. Weber had autism, a condition which causes high-stress situations such as a police stop to overwhelm him. Although police haven’t said whether or not he was armed, it is obvious that he did not have one, as this would have been the first detail released.

READ MORE:  WATCH: Cop Shoots Unarmed Woman in the Face—Court Rules It Justified

When Weber attempted to go to the only place he knew that could help him, police, who clearly lacked any training in dealing with people on the autism spectrum — killed him.

If anyone would like to donate to the family, they can write a check to the Joey Weber Memorial Fund and send it to Baalmann Mortuary, PO Box 204, Oakley, KS 67748 and that will be put in his memorial fund.

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Matt Agorist is an honorably discharged veteran of the USMC and former intelligence operator directly tasked by the NSA. This prior experience gives him unique insight into the world of government corruption and the American police state. Agorist has been an independent journalist for over a decade and has been featured on mainstream networks around the world. Agorist is also the Editor at Large at the Free Thought Project. Follow @MattAgorist on Twitter, Steemit, and now on Facebook.
  • crazytrain2

    This is sad and frustrating. This poor guy was obviously scared and tried to go somewhere he felt safe, and where staff could help him. Having autism and being scared does not excuse him from being pulled over for a traffic violation, but even if you could call this a pursuit, I fail to see anything that would validate deadly force, even if he was not following directions, which seems to be the case. But not following commands, even after a pursuit, does not automatically equal deadly force.

    • Assume the worst of the guy, that he committed some serious traffic violation (say ran a red light), left the scene and resisted arrest (sounds gilded, but go with it).

      Now consider the COP. What justification did he have to shoot the guy in the back?

      There was clearly no threat to the COP, because the guy was running away.

      I am a huge supporter of the many good public servants that keep us all safe.

      But this sort of lazy bone-headed act is unacceptable.

      Is there any more factual information on this case?

      Like, what happened to the COP?

      What was his side of the story?

  • crazytrain2

    That would be great, but the turnover rate in policing and he need for officers immediately makes that unlikely. US officers need to change their training. We need to learn from U.K. Police on how to de escalate, especially when dealing with knife wielding persons. U.K. POLIce do an exceptional job at that. US police academies focus too much on boot camp style training, and the scenarios are usually shoot, don’t shoot scenarios. There needs to be more de escalation training and more options than just shoot or not. And I went through that training, then spent ten years training officers in use of force. I always tried to pound that into their heads-that we spend too much time worrying about when to shoot, when that is a very rare occurrence in the average officer’s career.

  • Robert

    Perhaps dealing with unarmed people at the very least. I can’t picture how an unarmed man posed a deadly threat.

    • There are scores of examples where COPs kill unarmed people.

      In one case, a man stood in the alcove in front of a store and was shot, over and over. Investigation showed he was unarmed and possibly did not speak English.

      There should have been 30 COPs stripped of license to carry a firearm.

  • > In my opinion those “regular folks” are no better when they allow that
    “brotherhood ” thing to get in the way of what’s right, ethical, legal
    and/or moral.

    It is well known that power corrupts. No one is immune to this. The courts, police and plain bureaucrats all can succumb to the rationalized white lie and end up in an ethical spiral.

    And, yes the corrupt generally create the problems that good people take the fall for. That goes for the judiciary, schools and so forth too. The ones that are truly dirty know when the hide and run. That leaves the good folks that are attending to their duties to get broadsided by the inevitable investigation.

    In the case of Joe Webber, the officer messed up. That there is little information about the investigation is deeply concerning.

    In defense of the excessive force you intimated. At times it is called for. I know of a case where someone wanted to suicide by COP. They did not anticipate a lady COP with a healthy attitude and TASER. I understand that they shocked many, many times to get the person down and after the first officer was thrown off, it took several to get control. Knowing the person, I was very disappointed, but understand that in that case the COPs, court and rehab folks, did a great job.

    We collectively face a lot of problems. Social ills, remain a paramount problem. As a society we need to diligently ferret out these problems and deal with them. Covering up a travesty is not dealing with the problem, it is compounding it.

    JudgeRoyBean25, there is an old saying, two wrongs to not make a right…

  • Barney Fife LAW!

    It seems that we need to address the issue of the accidental use of deadly force. If the CPOS are cleared of criminal wrongdoing, but in retrospect is is clear that they made a mistake, then there should be consequences.

    There are three cases that come to mind:
    Joe Webber – shot in the back for possible traffic infraction and resisting arrest (by running home)
    William Reddie – falsely accused of using marijuana by an anonymous source allegedly resisted CPS taking his child, allegedly brandished a 4″ pocket knife, so the police used deadly force and killed him. The autopsy confirmed there was no marijuana use. http://www.offthegridnews.com/current-events/father-shot-and-killed-as-police-try-to-take-child

    Some time ago there was a story of a non-verbal autistic man who refused orders from a police officer and sought refuse in a women’s dress shop. The officer tried to take him into custody and got her blouse torn. So a team of officers subdued the man and dumped many cans of mace into his face; while a nurse stoo by and screamed, “YOU ARE KILLING HIM”. The man expired. The police explained the non-verbal man was mot following spoken orders and resisting arrest.

    There are a lot more like this…

    What about a Barney Fife law that takes firearms away from police in such situations. They can be COPs, but no firearms. It is the lest they can do, where they use excessive force and are technically guilty of murder of an innocent.

    What do you think?

  • Training is one thing. Clear consequences are another.

    If a COP uses excessive and deadly force and it is clearly inappropriate and they wriggle off the hook for murder, pull their license to carry a firearm. They can be COPs, and can serve as a reminder to all that “accidentally” killing an innocent has consequences.

  • DO WE NEED A BARNEY FIFE LAW?

    The issue of police “accidentally” using deadly force is rampant. Most COPs are level headed and diligent. Yet, it seems that there are a few that are not.

    There is the case of a father who was anonymously accused of smoking marijuana. CPS and the COPs went to take the child and allegedly he resisted and allegedly brandished a 4″ pocket knife. So the COPs shot him dead. The autopsy confirmed no drugs. http://www.offthegridnews.com/current-events/father-shot-and-killed-as-police-try-to-take-child/

    There is a case where the police shoot the therapist of a man with autism, who was laying on the ground, hands in the air. Absolutely no threat. http://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/florida-cop-charged-manslaughter-shooting-autistic-man-s-unarmed-therapist-n745716 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shooting_of_Charles_Kinsey

    There is the case of COPs killing an autistic bay and shooting his father. They posed no threat and were evidently accused of resisting arrest. A video shows that they were no threat to anyone. http://www.cbsnews.com/news/video-of-police-shooting-that-killed-6-year-old-autistic-louisiana-boy-released-jeremy-mardis/ http://nypost.com/2017/03/25/cop-convicted-of-manslaughter-in-shooting-of-6-year-old-autistic-boy/

    These sorts of shootings are not uncommon. There are lots of shootings where the issue are less overtly clear. Like the many unarmed alleged criminals that are shot, many multiple times. Later instigation show no weapons or proof any any threat to the police and generally some mitigating circumstance, like not speaking English…

    It seems we need a “Barney Fife law”, where police officers who slip criminal misconduct should permanently loose the right to carry sidearms on the job. It is the least that they can do to atone for killing an innocent.

  • REALConservative

    Police; afraid of family pets and the handicapped.

    Sounds like a brave bunch of heroes.