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Mother made famous in Baltimore riots seeks help after fire destroys home

Toya Graham, who became famous during the April 2015 riots after she was caught on video smacking and pulling her son away from trouble, says her family is homeless now after an accidental fire. (WBFF)

BALTIMORE (WBFF) -- Toya Graham, who became famous during the April 2015 riots after she was caught on video smacking and pulling her son away from trouble, says her family is homeless now after an accidental fire.

The incident occurred on Saturday afternoon at her home on Druid Hill Avenue. That same son, Michael, 17, was frying chicken tenders when a fire broke out.

"I had stepped away to the bathroom real quick," said Michael. "When I got back, there was smoke and fire coming from the pan."

Michael, who was home alone at the time, said he threw water on the grease fire, which made the blaze worse.

He called 911, and no one was hurt in the incident.

However, the situation has created new trouble for the family. "I'm not blaming Michael," Toya said. "But I'm angry."

Toya had no renter's insurance, she said. The ordeal has moved her to tears.

"I'm tired of the struggle, I feel broken," she said. "You try to hold on because you try to do everything, you try to be strong for your children. You try, but this is a lot."

Michael said he regrets being unable to stop the fire. "I should have been more careful when I was cooking," he said. "Now, it's like, what we're going to do now?"

Numerous people have reached out with offers of help for the family. Graham has set up a GoFundMe page for donations.

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