12-year-old helps teach Montgomery Co. police about autism

A Montgomery County boy is helping police officers improve how they communicate with people who have autism.

Jake Edwards, 12, was named event ambassador for Autism Night Out, which was held in Rockville back in May.

He delivered a speech, which he put together with his mother, to help spread awareness.

"I'm shocked every day by what he does and how he's able to put his feelings into words to help other people. It's pretty cool and it's pretty amazing. And he really has embraced being able to help a lot of people," said mother Jenn Lynn.

The opportunity for Edwards to deliver the speech came after an encounter he had with police.

"I ran down the street and I yelled, 'Help.' Then, four neighbors called the police on me. And they [police] came to my house recently and I felt very scared," said Edwards.

He said things such as loud voices or noises make him feel uncomfortable.

Now, Edwards has been asked to deliver his speech to the next cadet class of Montgomery County police officers.

"They will be listening to each and every word that Jake says and of course, he will absolutely save a life if one officer thinks autism when they respond to a call," said Officer Laurie Reyes with the Montgomery County Police Department.

Edwards said his goal is simply to make a difference in his community.

"I'm trying to change everyone's life to a better form in Montgomery County," Edwards said.