8-year-old in California handcuffed by deputy

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An 8-year-old boy in handcuffs after walking away from Chapman Elementary School in Chico.

“I was torn up. It broke my heart. I started crying, and I’m going to start crying again.”

Meagan Ramey says her son is mentally disabled and often walks out of school.

“He’ll start walking off campus. The principal, we’ve talked about it several times.”

But this time, he was spotted by law enforcement.

“When they saw a young man dart across 20th Street, and when he got to the other side of the road, they noted that he appeared to be confused and anxious and that caused them concern.”

As deputies approached him, the 8-year-old walked away.

“As they were following him, they became more concerned that he might dart into traffic. So at one point one of the deputies took him and restrained him, and the that ultimately resulted in him struggling with the deputy and at one point even scratching the deputy.”

So the boy was handcuffed. When Ramey arrived, she was shocked at what she saw.

“Hands behind his back, his pants were past his bottom, his shoes were thrown off. He was screaming, kicking and crying and coughing because he has asthma as well.”

“When you are restraining somebody, even when you are doing it so that they don’t harm themselves, and they are screaming and yelling, you know, the optics of that aren’t good. It doesn’t look good. My heart goes out to all of the people there, but based on what I can see, their actions were motivated out of concern for this young man,” said Sheriff Kory Honea.

“When I saw him in handcuffs, it tore me up. I wanted to lose it on them, but at the same time I didn’t want to be getting myself in trouble.”

Now the Rameys are planning to file a complaint. Once that’s done the Butte County Sheriff says they will review their body cameras and conduct interviews.

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