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First-Grader Arrested, Handcuffed After Fight
2004 10 06

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Police handcuffed and arrested an 8-year-old boy after a fight and charged him with misdemeanor battery and criminal mischief.

First grader Isaac Sutton was arrested Monday by a Tallahassee police officer after a fight with a 10-year-old boy in his neighborhood. A police report says Isaac punched and slapped the other boy during an argument. The victim's mother called police. Isaac was taken to a juvenile center and released to his mother after midnight.

"This was children's stuff, a disagreement between two neighborhood kids," said Kathy Garner, Isaac's attorney. The boy's arrest was made public by his mother, Pamela Kelly.

It was the second time in recent weeks that a north Florida elementary school student has been booked by police for fighting. A 7-year-old in neighboring Jefferson County was arrested at school Sept. 1 for allegedly fighting another student, hitting a teacher and scratching a police officer.

In Isaac's case, assistant city attorney Rick Courtemanche said the arresting officer decided there was enough evidence to arrest the 4-foot-10, 70-pound boy. And, he said, city policy requires officers to handcuff juveniles when taking them to the county's Juvenile Assessment Center.

"He just needs a good talking-to," Garner said. "This doesn't need to be handled in the judicial system."

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