Local advocates speak out about Asperger Syndrome - 13abc.com Toledo (OH) News, Weather and Sports

Local advocates speak out about Asperger Syndrome

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As the investigation continues, we're learning more about the shooter who shot and killed more than two dozen people in Connecticut.  New reports have mentioned, Adam Lanza had Asperger Syndrome, a form of autism, but did the disorder lead to the crime?

Erin Smith, a mother of 2, is speaking out about the condition.  Her son, Carter was diagnosed with Aspergers one year ago.  She says he is a typical 5 year old, but there are times his symptoms are more obvious.

"There are some things that you have to watch they can be very rigid, when they're frustrated they can be very frustrated," Smith said.  "They can have a temper but again, you can see that with 'normal' kids or 'typical' kids."

Smith firmly believes, Aspergers did not cause the shooting in Connecticut.

"This first thing that came to my mind when I heard about it about it was, that is my son," she said. "Personally, I feel horrible for what happened.  It just makes me sad because now I think they're portraying people with Aspergers as monsters, and they're not."

Sherry Moyer agrees.  She is the director of the Center for Excellence in Autism at UTMC.

"There is no correlation, no causation, people who have Autism are no more likely to be violent than anyone else in the population."

She says people can't group those with forms of autism with one man who committed a horrific crime.

"In their eyes, it is something akin to, 'well he has brown eyes and I do too, maybe I had that much chance of being a murderer too," Moyer said.

For more information about Autism and Autism related disorders, click here, or call 419-383-3030

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