Baltimore Mother Lauded for Tough Treatment of Rioting Son

  • VOA News

    April 30, 2015 08:10

    A U.S. mother is winning widespread praise for repeatedly smacking her teenage son and yanking him off the streets of Baltimore after she spotted him throwing rocks at police during the city's riots earlier this week.

    Some people on social media called Toya Graham, a mother of six, "Mom of the Year."

    "I wish I had more parents who took charge of their kids out there tonight," Baltimore Police Commissioner Anthony Batts said after the Monday incident.

    After spotting her 16-year-old son, Michael, throwing rocks, Graham chased him in the street, slapping him in the face several times and pulling him away from the rioting.  A local television station captured her angrily berating him.

    ''Are you for real?" she demanded. "Really? This is what you want to do?  I told you I'd come down here, didn't I? Didn't I?''

    Screen grab from CBS News report on Toya Graham the Baltimore mom who pulled her son away from the rioting.

    In the calm aftermath, the mother told CBS News, "I just lost it.  I was shocked; I was angry, because you never want to see your child out there doing that. I'm a no-tolerant mother.  Everybody that knows me, know that I don't play that."

    The rioting and looting that erupted in an impoverished Baltimore neighborhood Monday occurred in part as a protest over the unexplained death of Freddie Gray, a 25-year-old African-American who died from a spinal injury while in police custody.

    Residents say they also were demonstrating against lack of employment opportunities in the community and police treatment of its residents.

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