Mother wants apology after police handcuff 6-year-old son at car - KMOV.com

Mother wants apology after police handcuff 6-year-old son at career day

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By KMOV Web Producer By KMOV Web Producer

ST. LOUIS (KMOV) – A mother is outraged after learning her 6-year-old son was handcuffed by St. Louis police and put in a squad car while at his elementary school Wednesday.

During a career day at Washington Montessori School, an officer reportedly decided to try to make a teachable moment after the boy told her his nickname instead of his real name. The officer was trying to make the point about what happens to people who lie to police.

“This is not how you teach a 6-year-old to respect cops.  You just don’t,” Debbie Woodard, the boy’s mother, said.

Woodard tells News 4 she is not surprised how her son responded because he has always gone by his nickname ‘Jon Michael’ instead of his real name which is ‘Otis’.

Jon Michael eventually started to cry and was let out of the car.  A school district spokesman says the district will review how career days are handled in the future.

“A young student was used in a demonstration with an officer on arrest procedure, and it upset the child and certainly I don’t think that was the police officer’s intent,” Patrick Wallace, the school district spokesman, said.

Police will only say they are conducting an internal investigation on the unidentified female officer, who works in the city’s traffic division.

In the meantime, Woodard is waiting for an apology.

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