Albany teen talks Asperger’s, Conn. shooting - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Albany teen talks Asperger’s, Conn. shooting

Posted: Updated:
  • More WALB News10 HeadlinesMore News HeadlinesMore>>

  • Carpenter Rd. construction in Tifton starts this week

    Carpenter Rd. construction in Tifton starts this week

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 11:29 PM EDT2014-07-30 03:29:29 GMT
    Work is now underway to widen about two, and half miles of Carpenter Road in Tifton.When construction is complete, there will be two lanes of traffic in each direction, plus a center turn lane with curbs and gutters on both sides of the road.Drivers are encouraged to use an alternate route.The work is expected to be complete in October.Copyright 2014 WALB. All rights reserved.More >>
    Work is now underway to widen about two, and half miles of Carpenter Road in Tifton.When construction is complete, there will be two lanes of traffic in each direction, plus a center turn lane with curbs and gutters on both sides of the road.Drivers are encouraged to use an alternate route.The work is expected to be complete in October.Copyright 2014 WALB. All rights reserved.More >>
  • Migrant workers find comfort in Tifton

    Migrant workers find comfort in Tifton

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 11:23 PM EDT2014-07-30 03:23:51 GMT
    So far this year, more than 1100 unaccompanied migrant children have been sent to Georgia. We don't know exactly where. Governor Nathan Deal worries they'll cause a financial burden on local communities.At Our Divine Savior Catholic Church in Tifton, as many as 300 migrant families will attend mass on Saturday evenings.More >>
    So far this year, more than 1100 unaccompanied migrant children have been sent to Georgia. We don't know exactly where. Governor Nathan Deal worries they'll cause a financial burden on local communities.At Our Divine Savior Catholic Church in Tifton, as many as 300 migrant families will attend mass on Saturday evenings.More >>
  • Young athletes taught to be champions off the field

    Young athletes taught to be champions off the field

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 9:02 PM EDT2014-07-30 01:02:49 GMT
    Some young football players are learning the importance of winning off the field.More >>
    Some young football players are learning the importance of winning off the field.More >>
ALBANY, GA (WALB) -

There are still so many questions why 20-year-old Adam Lanza slaughtered innocent children at a Connecticut elementary school last week.

We do know Lanza had Asperger's Syndrome, a highly functional form of autism.

An Albany teen who lives with Asperger's is speaking out.

He wants you to know to know the truth about the disorder and to understand people like him aren't dangerous.

17-year-old John Scott Okon practiced his guitar with other teens at the Levee in Downtown Albany Wednesday night.  It's easy to see that he's a music lover. 

He also has Asperger's Syndrome, and he was frustrated after hearing Connecticut school shooter Adam Lanza had the disorder.

"I was not real happy about it because I've never killed anybody before," said Okon.

John Scott and his parents want other families to know that kids like him aren't dangerous.

"He goes not all of us are like that. It really Upset him that people think these kids are just way out there, well it can be any person on the street that did something like that that's having a hard day," said John Scott's mother Tara Okon.

Not much is known about Lanza's mental state, but experts say it's clear he suffered from some sort of mental illness for which he needed treatment.

"What my hope is, is that this shooting may give us the opportunity to have more open discussion about mental illness in this country," said Dr. Cheryl Kaiser.

Dr. Cheryl Kaiser says people diagnosed with Asperger's are usually mild tempered and rarely act out violently.  She believes there was something else that triggered Lanza's rampage.

"He had Asperger's disorder, but I think it's probably more to it than that because it's not a function of Asperger's to become dangerous to society," said Dr. Kaiser.

"I don't want to be portrayed as a psychopathic murderer," said Okon.

Now, John Scott wants to get the word out about Asperger's and says others shouldn't stereotype or alienate those with the disorder.

"Even though I have Asperger's, I'm very proud to live with it and do not judge me by my condition only judge personality," said Okon.

He hopes the public heeds his advice.

Dr. Kaiser also said there is no clear connection between Asperger's syndrome and violent behavior likes Lanza's.

Thursday, five more of Adam Lanza's victims will be laid to rest, three 6-year-olds and two teachers.

 

Copyright 2012 WALB.  All rights reserved.