Manchester riots: Parents 'not to blame', says mother

The parents of young people involved in riots across England are not to blame, the mother of a 13-year-old boy who went before the courts has said.

The teenager admitted possessing an offensive weapon after he was stopped in Manchester on Wednesday with a hammer strapped to his leg.

"We need to take some responsibility but not all of it," his mother said.

"You can't say what your child's doing 24 hours a day no matter what a good parent you are."

Her son was given a nine-month referral order when he appeared at Manchester Magistrates' Court but was warned by the judge he would have been jailed had he have been older.

Speaking to the BBC, his mother said threatening to evict people from council houses was the wrong thing to do.

"You can't blame parents because the kids are going their own way and doing what they want.

"I fought a long time to get this house, and I've not been here long.

"It's wrong, because the parents haven't done it.

"If the parents had done it, then fair enough. What their kids have done, they shouldn't be blamed for it.

"A lot of parents go out to work every day and they work hard to bring their kids up."

'Scared child'

She said the courts should show leniency to those people who had got "caught up" in the trouble.

She said her son had the hammer because he was a "scared child" concerned for his own safety.

"You can see clearly the people who are doing it, the police were there, they should have all them on camera, they should be the ones who should get done, and not the innocent people," she said.

"There is a lot of innocent people who will get done because they were in the wrong place at the wrong time.

"I deal with my son, the way I think is right. I take away all his things that he likes most.

"He is grounded and there is not much more I can do. What do you want me to do, leather him? Put him in care?"

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