"I was just sexually assaulted by a child." So claimed a white woman outside a Brooklyn deli Wednesday as cell-phone cameras rolled and the accused black boy, who's about 9, burst into tears. Teresa Klein, 53, made the accusation in a 911 call, saying the child "grabbed" her and then his mother "decided to yell at me." The scene unfolded in a Facebook video that's been seen over five million times as of this writing, the New York Post reports. But Klein didn't back down, and amid a firestorm of social-media criticism returned to Sahara Deli Market on Friday to watch security footage of the alleged groping.
People jammed the store's doorway and aimed their cell cameras at Klein as footage played on a ceiling-mounted TV: It showed the boy brushing Klein's behind with his backpack as she leaned over the counter. Klein later apologized in a media interview, saying, "Young man, I don’t know your name but I’m sorry." But she denied being racist and still grumbled about the boy's mother getting aggressive with her. Meanwhile, Twitter feeds have dubbed her #CornerstoreCaroline, a reference to other recent, dubious accusations by white people about black behavior (another accuser was called #BBQBecky). And then there's the little boy: "He's going to be traumatized for the rest of his life," says the Flatbush resident who posted the video. "This is something that will stick with him." (Read more racism stories.)