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Feds Will Pick Up Cost of Trackers for Children With Autism, Schumer Says

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TWC News: Feds Will Pick Up Cost of Trackers for Children With Autism, Schumer Says
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Senator Charles Schumer on Wednesday announced the federal government is going to pick up the tab for voluntary tracking devices for children with autism.

It comes on the heels of the disappearance and death of Avonte Oquendo.

The 14-year-old, who suffered from autism, exited his school in October.

His remains were found in the East River earlier this month.

Schumer pushed for legislation to provide GPS tracking devices for children with autism and other conditions, in which they tend to wander off from caregivers or parents.

The Justice Department has agreed to use grant funds to pay for the voluntary devices.

The news comes as new video surfaces of Avonte leaving his Long Island City school through a door that had been left ajar by someone exiting the school.

According to the Oquendo family attorney, it was left open for about a half hour before being closed by a school safety agent.

Police commissioner Bill Bratton said that the new information helps with the investigation but still doesn't tell the whole story.

"It's another piece of the puzzle as to what happened to that young man," he said. "In any investigation, you look for as much information as you can get, so that was a significant assistance, understanding how did he exit the building. Going forward, that's something the school department's going to certainly have to take a look at, their security procedures for open doors."

Avonte's family has filed a lawsuit and is demanding video evidence and internal records related to his disappearance.

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