HIGHLAND, Ill. — An Illinois teenager with Asperger’s syndrome is teaching his cowardly bullies a lesson they won’t forget after dropping the charges and opting for a more productive way of getting back at his tormentors.
Gavin Stone has Asperger’s Syndrome and ADHD.
Gavin’s mom, Cortnie, says her son has difficulty socializing with others.
He can appear rude, impatient, “weird”, detached, or uninterested, but this is not intentional. He can also be kind, generous, and forgiving, but even this can appear awkward at times because some of it is learned and not always natural. Keeping longtime friends is tough because of his tendency to isolate yourself. Gavin has spent years learning what society thinks is appropriate and not appropriate, and so he doesn’t offend anyone or stick out in social situations. Being a teenager with Asperger’s is tough because all the sudden people around you are consistently “breaking” all the social do’s and don’ts you’ve spent years learning.
Cortnie says a group of teens recently beat her son up because they thought he was “weird.”
On Thursday night, some kids were talking about how “it’s weird” that he is always by himself, attending events alone and watching people, and it was “creepy” how he wanted to be friends with people he didn’t know. On Friday night, another kid that overheard that conversation decided to take matters into his own hands and become judge and jury, and this is the result of that. He didn’t ask questions, didn’t get to know Gavin, never met him, and didn’t give him a chance to leave. He was called to meet someone, surrounded by people he didn’t know, choked, punched, and left laying on the pavement so he would “learn his lesson”.
His mom says Gavin suffered a mild concussion, a bruised esophagus, the tip of his nose fractured, and hematoma in his eye. Fortunately, she says the damage is not permanent.
Gavin decided not to press charges against the bullies, but instead, offered his attackers an alternate penalty.
He did not press charges, but requested their community service be disability related, that they write a paper on Asperger’s, and that they watch a 20 min video statement he taped while their families were present so they could see the damage they did and hear the event from his perspective.
A friend of the family shared the story on Facebook and has received an overwhelming response.
The post has been shared more than 200,000 times, filled with proud and outraged commenters.