Asperger's linked to violence? - KOTA Territory News

Asperger's linked to violence?


When a tragedy such as last week's shooting in Newtown, Connecticut occurs, the whole nation looks for answers as to how this could have happened.

While the usual suspects are gun control or bad parenting, an investigator hinted the 20 year old gunman's Asperger's syndrome could be to blame.

Doctor Mindy Hedlund, a Clinical Psychologist in Rapid City, says someone with Asperger's, a mild form of autism, has a hard time with social interaction.

But she doesn't see a direct connection between the disorder and planned violent behavior.

"In a younger child there might be more tantrums, in an adolescent there might be more yelling or something but nothing that would indicate that someone would go out and shoot people," said Dr. Hedlund.

Dr. Hedlund says the shooter must have had a number of other issues that triggered his rampage.

She adds, in order to try and prevent another tragedy such as the one at Sandy Hook Elementary, there needs to be more ways to readily treat mental health disorders.

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