A mother in rural North Carolina is facing misdemeanor child abuse charges after reportedly ordering her 12-year-old son to beat her 15-year-old son with a belt in an attempt to make the older child heterosexual.
Mary Gowan admitted to spanking her son but told local TV station WECT that she did so because the teen had been visiting a gay man's house, and she believed the man had molested her son. Gowans says she reported the suspected assault to police, but nothing was done.
The police report alleges that Gowan ordered her older son to strip down to his underwear and her 12-year-old son to beat him with a belt. The report notes that the teenager was "not allowed to fight back" and suffered a large abrasion on his back. Police are considering whether to charge the mother with a hate crime, according to WECT.
Gowans told WECT that she doesn't agree with the "gay lifestyle" but also admitted that she thinks her son might be gay. If he were to come out to her, Gowans told the station, the admission would bother her "because he's a young age, he's not all there, he do not know right from wrong."
Watch WECT's interview with Gowans below.