A mother who saw her son on television throwing rocks at police in Baltimore did more than just watch it, she got up, went to the location, found her son and began smacking him around in front of everyone, all the while yelling at him for being there, reports ABC Baltimore.
Riots began on Monday following earlier protests over the death of Freddie Gray, 25, who died after sustaining severe spinal injuries in police custody earlier in the month. Late Monday night a bulk of the rioters began throwing rocks and bricks at police officers.
In the video that has gone viral, Toya Graham is seen grabbing her 16-year-old son and smacking him in the face several times as he jerks away. She screams at him, “take that f*****g mask off.” The look on the young man’s face seemed to be crossed between amazed and confused as his mom would not stop chasing after him.
“You are out here doing this stuff,” you can hear Graham yell. “Get the F**k over here. Get over here, now. Did you hear what I say?” Graham said as she tried to catch up with her son that was trying to get away from her.
It was WMAR-TV who captured the footage of the woman yelling at the young man dressed in black from head to toe, reports USA Today.
Graham is being called “Mom of the year” by social media and she spoke with CBS News about the video which interestingly went viral although there is little explanation of what was going on, but most could reason that it was a mom who had caught her son doing something wrong. In the interview, Toya tells the network that she intervened out of concern for her 16-year-old son’s safety.
“He gave me eye contact,” Graham told CBS News. “And at that point, you know, not even thinking about cameras or anything like that. That’s my only son and at the end of the day I don’t want him to be a Freddie Gray,”
Baltimore Police Commissioner Anthony Batts became aware of the video and stated that many of the rioters were from the nearby high school and he encouraged parents to tell their children to go home.
“These are Baltimore youthful residents, a number of them came right out of the local high schools there on the other side of Mondawmin and started engaging in this,” said Batts. “I think these were youth coming out of the high school and they thought it was cute to throw cinder blocks at the police department and address it that way.”
On Tuesday the National Guard was deployed and a curfew was put into place.