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6 years old cuffed and charged with battery

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MELBOURNE -- A 6-year-old boy was put in handcuffs and charged with felony battery after he hit his teacher and a police officer with books, authorities said.

The 60-pound first grader appeared in court Thursday, a day after his arrest at Endeavour Elementary School.

The Rockledge boy told officers he was upset because ``someone's grandmother died,'' said Barbara Matthews, a spokeswoman for the Cocoa Police Department.

``He's a tiny, little kid, so when the two officers first went, they tried to give him benefit of the doubt,'' Matthews said. ``But he was also out of control. Once he struck the teacher, it became a battery.''

A police officer tried to talk with the child, but he was struck in the forehead with a book thrown from 8 feet away, Matthews said.

The boy, who was not named, was handcuffed after the teacher asked that he be prosecuted, Matthews said.

The boy's mother was called before the arrest. Officials said the boy also had a violent episode with another teacher nearly three months ago. He was turned over to juvenile detention authorities but later was allowed to go home.

The child was suspended from school for 10 days. No information on his lawyer was available.

Prosecutors temporarily removed the boy's case from the court docket, said David Koenig, division chief of the state attorney's juvenile division.

``The focus now is to prevent him from self-destructing,'' Koenig said. ``We want to find a solution.''

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