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McCready free on bond after arrest scuffle

Country singer Mindy McCready is free on $1,000 (EUR723) bond after a weekend arrest on misdemeanor charges she scratched her mother on the face during a scuffle and resisted sheriff's deputies, authorities said.

McCready's mother, Melody Inge, called Lee County sheriff's deputies shortly after 1 a.m. Saturday to report the 31-year-old singer was intoxicated and causing a disturbance, an arrest report said. The report said McCready scratched Inge on the face during the disturbance.

McCready denied attacking her mother and told the News-Press of Fort Myers that deputies used excessive force in the arrest. A booking photo shows a cut on McCready's nose, which the arrest report said she suffered "as she continued to struggle and resist arrest."

"I was holding my baby at the time," said McCready of her 15-month-old son. "They tackled me. They didn't give any directions. They just tackled. There was no reason for it. To take down a woman holding a baby, it's just not right."

Sheriff's Sgt. Larry King said a deputy took McCready's baby and another wrestled the uncooperative singer to the ground. Capt. Tom Eberhardt said McCready also caused a disturbance in the jail and was subdued with pepper spray.

McCready had a hit in 1996 with "Guys Do It All the Time," but has struggled in recent years, beginning with a 2004 conviction for fraudulently obtaining prescription painkillers. She was on probation for that offense when she was charged with driving under the influence in 2005.

She was found not guilty of the DUI charge but guilty of driving on a suspended license. She then pleaded guilty to violating her probation but has petitioned to withdraw that plea.

A Circuit Court hearing on the probation violation charge is scheduled for Sept. 7 in Williamson County, a Nashville suburb.

McCready's attorney, Lee Dryer, did not answer calls made by The Associated Press to his cell phone Monday, though information from the Williamson County Court Clerk showed Dryer had withdrawn as her lawyer.

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