Police investigating after UNCC student with autism attacked on light rail

Police investigating after UNCC student with autism attacked on light rail

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Police are investigating after a UNC Charlotte student was attacked along the light rail.

Anthony Proctor said his 20-year-old son Chris who has autism was with other students from UNC Charlotte who have special needs on Wednesday afternoon heading back from a school trip when Proctor said Chris was targeted.

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"A young man came up and started punching him," Proctor said. "This person thought that it was easy to take something."

Proctor said he believes the attacker wanted Chris' cellphone.

"His size, he's a big person, but he doesn't understand violence. That's not him," Proctor said.

He said the man hit his son in the head several times, but did not take anything and then ran off the light rail at the Parkwood Station.

Proctor said he tried to reassure his son he didn't do anything wrong.

"There's a lot of things you can do in this world to me, but doing something to my children is not acceptable," Proctor said.

Proctor said Chris was checked by a doctor and while his physical injuries appear to be minor, the situation is serious.

"I don't want it brushed under the table like you hear in some cases just because he didn't get hurt worse," Proctor said.

Proctor told Channel 9's Briana Harper that despite his son complaining about his head hurting, he still wanted to return to school Thursday. He said he hopes his son's experience of riding the light rail isn't tainted, but can also continue just as normal.

CATS said surveillance video on the light rail made it easy to identify the suspected attacker and an arrest warrant has been issued.

The company said it will not be releasing the video since it is still an active investigation.