A brand new Annoying Burgher!

There are several reactions you can have to your fourteen-year-old son stealing a Jeep from a driveway, taking it for a joyride, being pursued by police, and flipping the Jeep on the Parkway East, totaling it. The Jeep. Not the Parkway East.

I’d like to total the Parkway East. And the tunnel. And the mountain through which the tunnel runs. And replace it all with a 12-lane highway with a speed limit of 105 mph.

Why am I not yet mayor? Or the head of the URA? Or PennDot? Or America?

Where were we?



a. Anger at your son.

b. Biblical anger at your son manifest in the very bats of hell flying out of your mouth as you scream with such rage, the temperature in your house rises ten degrees and Voldemort is all, “Chill pill!”

c. Anger at the jerk who dared leave a Jeep around to be stolen by your son.

If you chose C, congratulations! You’re the next Annoying Burgher!

What? You don’t think any parent in their right mind would choose C? Think again!

“It was an opportunity that, in a 14-year-old’s eyes, was at the perfect time and at the perfect moment,” said the boy’s mother.

The boy’s mother said she’s not letting her son off the hook, but feels the owner of the vehicle should have been more responsible.

“I’m not downplaying my son’s role in taking something that didn’t belong to him, but I am saying they actually left their keys in the car and the vehicle could have been taken by anybody,” she said.

She said she also blames the Jeep owner’s boyfriend for following her son and calling police.

“He had no right to chase my son, which it could have been a situation. Maybe it could have been just a joyride down the street. Maybe he wanted to go farther than he felt like walking,” she said.

I … I don’t even know where to begin. I’ll start by picking the brain matter off of my monitor because my head just exploded.

First, he didn’t just “take something that didn’t belong to him.” He didn’t walk out of CVS with a Snickers bar he didn’t pay for. He didn’t take a bicycle from the neighbor’s porch. HE STOLE A CAR. A CAR. He is 14! He shouldn’t even be driving! And he stole a car! And led police on a high-speed chase! IN A CAR. So that right there is the pesky “downplaying” you just said you weren’t doing. Play down, playa.

Second, yes, she left her keys in her purse to run inside quickly. But the vehicle wasn’t “taken by anybody.” It was taken by your FOURTEEN-YEAR-OLD SON! A THIEF!  WHO STOLE A CAR!

And the car owner’s boyfriend? Had no right to chase your son and call the police? He should have instead said, “Well, let me just stand here and watch this kid drive away in my girlfriend’s Jeep because maybe he just needs to head a mile up to the CVS to buy some milk and it’s just too far to walk, and maybe he’ll bring the car right back as soon as he’s done with his shopping. Under no circumstances should I call the police and report that A FOURTEEN-YEAR-OLD KID JUST STOLE A CAR.”

Because God forbid kids these days do any sort of walking to a destination further away than their desired walking distance when there’s a perfectly good car that can be stolen. God forbid you place 100% of the blame on your son for STEALING A CAR. God forbid you hold him accountable for his crime.

So what should you say to the news media when they ask you about your14-year-old son stealing a car?

It’s a trick question! You shouldn’t be physically able to say anything on account of all THE HELL-BATS FLYING OUT OF YOUR MOUTH.

You’re the next Annoying Burgher and your crown is in the mail and by “crown” I mean this gif:


  1. Shari
    August 14, 2012 1:46 pm

    Oh, thank you for posting that. I saw it in the paper today and my head nearly exploded too.

  2. Gina
    August 14, 2012 1:48 pm

    My favorite part was “Maybe he wanted to go farther than he felt like walking” OK, then. I want to go to Florida, but I don’t feel like walking. I’m going to go steal a plane from the airport.

  3. Julie B.
    August 14, 2012 1:49 pm

    *Slow Clap* Thank you! This is what was going through my head yesterday as I read about this. The amount of ignorance displayed by this woman is repugnant.

  4. Cassie
    August 14, 2012 1:50 pm

    I mean, what ever happened to personal responsibility? Is that a dying art? I mean, kids these days, sure. But what about their parents? Kids learn things from somewhere and sometimes lack of parenting or even overparenting causes your kids to do stupid shit.

    You should probably just do better.

    Oh, and ground your kid, too. And actually stick to it.

    (Disclaimer: I am NOT in any way, shape or form a perfect parent. But shit, if my kid did something that stupid I’d yell at my kid and then myself and then do better. Lawd!)

  5. Sue
    August 14, 2012 1:52 pm

    Thank you for saying everything that was going through my brain at 100 mph this morning when I heard what his mother’s response was……..as you say [headdesk]!!

  6. Rachel
    August 14, 2012 1:57 pm

    Amen! & That’s Church. I’m trying to keep my head from exploding til the mom files a lawsuit for her thief’s pain & suffering… Which if she does, please, please, please let me be on that jury

  7. Alison
    August 14, 2012 2:00 pm

    You basically just said what I said in a comment on WTAE’s facebook page about this. HE STOLE A CAR. … the hell?

  8. Alison
    August 14, 2012 2:02 pm

    P.S. I love… LOVE… that the Jeep owner is all “I’m irresponsible? Where were you when your kid was stealing my car?” Preach!

  9. Katie
    August 14, 2012 2:02 pm

    I had a discussion about this on twitter yesterday. My Mom used to say “Some people’s kids” when she’d hear about things like this. Parents today seriously scare me.. My 12 year old was in the car with me when we drove past the accident and wondered what had happened..but she said it best when we found out..”Mom, I wouldn’t have made it to the hospital to be in critical condition..you would have found out and just killed me right there!” I have 4 kids..I’m a single parent..its hard! Some days I want to hide from my kids..but they know…they KNOW that my wrath is assured should they attempt anything in the realm of stupidity that this unfortunate child displayed.

  10. Clair
    August 14, 2012 2:05 pm

    Speechless. Just…wow. Look, my kid got in trouble a few months ago doing something FAR, FAR LESS SEVERE than stealing a car and our reaction was “b.” Hell-bats. And then some. The boy is still suffering some of the punishments we enacted back then (not physically of course…but he just got back his Xbox, which he had not seen in 5 months…among other things…and is still restructed from certain other things, these mainly involving the kids he chooses to hang out with, etc). To have your kid steal a car, take police on a high speed chase then wreck?? Um…yeah…my kid would be DONE. And I do understand she may be worried about her son’s health but that is NO reason to downplay the severity of the situation! NONE. Shoot, I’d be by his bedside waiting for him to wake up so I could knock him out again! (ok not literally but I think most of you know what I mean!) And to try and shift blame to the car’s owner? Give me a break! Hell, why did she not just come out and say “oh yeah and the guy he wrecked into? totally should not have been on the parkway at that precise time.” because THAT is how ridiculous she sounds right about now!

  11. red pen mama
    August 14, 2012 2:06 pm

    Thank goodness you found the words, because they are totally escaping me.

    Wait, found some. That child, if he were mine, would be grounded until he was 16. No sports, no school activities, all types of soup-kitchen volunteering, and no-none-zero computer/cell phone time. For two years. On top of whatever the hell the police could charge him with.

    Of course, I am praying to the patron saint of parenthood (there’s a patron saint of parenthood, isn’t there?) that none of my children be they 14, 16 or 22 feel the need to steal a car, even if it’s a Jeep with the damn keys in the ignition.

    That mother should be charged with something. I’m not sure what. Can you give tickets out for sucky parenting? (of course, now I’m on a slippery slope here…)

    • Butcher's Dog
      August 14, 2012 7:35 pm

      charge should be pws…parenting while stupid. Just like there should be a dws (driving while stupid) charge for people who text and drive, for instance. And those would all be borderline capital offenses. Just sayin’.

      • Butcher's Dog
        August 14, 2012 7:41 pm

        And actually the keys were in a purse on the seat. Draw your own conclusions about what junior’s initial thoughts were upon opening the purse.

      • red pen mama
        August 17, 2012 12:30 pm

        I don’t know, my parenting style could easily be mistaken for pws by some people (probably not people in authority, but still). hence the slippery slope.

  12. Karen
    August 14, 2012 2:07 pm

    It was truly a news day for bad parents. First, this bat$hit crazy woman, who at least had the good sense not to show her face on camera while spewing that nonsense, then the woman who, in addition to shoplifting more than $5,000 worth of merchandise from Nordstrom’s, had her 14-year-old daughter driving a rented vehicle as her getaway car! And we wonder why kids are so screwed up. God help us all.

  13. SteelCityMagnolia
    August 14, 2012 2:13 pm

    I KNEW you’d comment on this today! I KNEW you wouldn’t disappoint me!!!

    When I read this (first thing this morning when I got to work), I too had to clean brains off my monitor. My blood pressure STILL is hovering somewhere around WTF over astronomical.

    If this woman wanted to hold anyone else responsible for what her spawn did, how about herowndamnself for not teaching her kid right from wrong???? Instead of defending her little felon to the local news, she oughta be on her welfare-lifer knees taking a full accounting of her lucky stars that her kid didn’t freaking KILL someone on his little joyride.

    Someone should have “tooken” this woman’s uterus. About 15 years ago.

  14. eleanorstrousers
    August 14, 2012 2:13 pm

    I wrecked my parents’ car once when driving it at 16- with permission- and considered leaving the state rather than face the hellbats. After reading this article yesterday, I wanted to go to this woman’s house and spew some hellbats of my own.

    • Stynjen
      August 14, 2012 2:23 pm

      I did the same thing. When my mom and dad arrived to pick me up, the police officer pulled my mom aside and said “your daughter has asked to be taken into protective custody, so promise me you won’t kill her”. lol

      That was the longest, most boring summer of my life!

    • G-Man
      August 14, 2012 3:58 pm

      Eleanor- At least you knew not to steal a car.

  15. Ashley
    August 14, 2012 2:17 pm

    I work at a public school. This parent’s response does not surprise me at all. *sigh*

  16. Scott
    August 14, 2012 2:18 pm

    We were on our way home from Idlewild Sunday evening and found ourselves, and our two kids (baby and toddler) caught right in the middle of this chase on the Parkway East. First of all, three police cars sped by and around us right after the Rodi Road exit going AT LEAST 100 mph. Other cars, reacting to the mayhem, were swerving all over the road. It was dangerous. Then…we reached the Churchill exit and saw the accident. This little hood rat is lucky to be alive. Truly. The cops leaped from their cars and sprinted over to see if he was ok. The crash scene was horrific. I cannot believe he lived. Of course, we assumed this was some person or family that had a regular accident, only later realizing that the “victim” was a juvenile criminal car thief.

    So….as a father, I say, fuck this kid…and fuck his mother. He put my wife and babies at risk. Directly. It is fortunate that they’re not publishing this kid’s name or his mom’s because if they did, after what we got caught up in and witnessed, I would seriously consider showing up on her doorstep and dressing her ass down. Unfortunately, I am not surprised considering this happened in Penn Hills, which has joined the short list of formerly decent communities that are now never-ending crime scenes and home to many “parents” with similar attitudes as this stupid mouth breather.

    I’m done now.

  17. Sheila
    August 14, 2012 2:44 pm

    Who knows what this woman was thinking (clearly she was not) but her response to the interviewer should have been, “thank God he is not dead and no one was hurt”. Period. And say nothing else. B/c that is what she should be doing. The kid will get his punishment from the police & hopefully that will change his ways but the mom should be on her knees thanking God she isn’t planning a funeral or visiting her son in jail for the rest of his life. Be grateful and keep your mouth shut.

  18. spoon
    August 14, 2012 2:54 pm

    “It takes a village of idiots to raise your kid!” err wait that’s not right. “It takes no responsibility on your part to raise your kids, the community does it!” Still not right. “We gave birth to you to get a tax credit and hoped you’d make it on Springer some day! Cha-ching!”. Oh wait! “Everything I learned from parenting came from a facebook meme!” There we go! Meeeeeeeooooooow.

    I’d make a kickstarter campaign to pay for his ass to go to military school.

  19. WesternPATexan
    August 14, 2012 3:51 pm

    Not to mention….He SHUT THE PARKWAY down for FIVE hours! Lucky me, I was on the parkway a few miles behind his stunt, and got stuck in that mess. I’m a transplant that lives in the South Hills. I had no idea where I was – exiting the Penn Hills ramp. My cell phone navigation kept suggesting I turn around and get back on the parkway to get to my address. What a inconvenience he caused so many people. Responsible for that??

  20. BeckyS
    August 14, 2012 4:32 pm

    Thank you for the post. I must go now as I too have brain matter to clean off my monitor. My mouth is hanging open not unlike that darn Aflac duck’s. Is no one responsible for anything anymore?

  21. Kim Z
    August 14, 2012 5:22 pm

    I hope that if ever there is a vehicle in front of our house with the keys in it that my son will be the sort of person who runs after the owner saying, “Hey, you forgot your keys!” not the type of person who STEALS THE CAR.

    Just because something’s easy to do doesn’t mean you should do it. That goes for stealing cars and (at least for this boy’s mother) having children.

  22. Cindy T.
    August 14, 2012 6:45 pm

    She’s an idiot. The apple didn’t fall far from the tree.

  23. Judi B
    August 14, 2012 6:55 pm

    I’d like to point out that this “Mother-of-the Year” actually said ,”anybody could’ve ‘tooken’ it.” At least she wasn’t stupid enough to allow her stupid, irresponsible, “not-my-fault” face to be on-camera. And kudos to the car’s owner, who [gasp] WORKED to earn the money to buy that car and is throwing “responsibility” back in that woman’s face.

  24. bluzdude
    August 14, 2012 8:09 pm

    If that was my kid, the police would be the least of his worries.

  25. P.O.
    August 15, 2012 10:03 am

    I fear a future world run by children who have never been spanked and have received trophies for participating…..

    • SteelCityMagnolia
      August 15, 2012 2:16 pm


      I lived in fear of my mama’s wooden spoon. All she had to do was take that thing out of the kitchen drawer and whack it a good one on the counter or table and my sister and I were the most perfect little angels you ever did see. I am very proud to admit that I had my arse whupped more than once with that thing. Made me the woman I am today.

      How many kids today can say that??? Hell, you look at a kid cross-eyed and they’re threatening to call CYS on you.

      • Scott
        August 15, 2012 3:50 pm

        re: the wooden spoon….I thought I was the only one.

        • Jules
          August 17, 2012 1:05 am

          Haha! I have a wooden spoon that I call The Ugly Stick. I tell my kids if they misbehave I’ll beat them with it and make them ugly. I don’t actually beat them with it, but the threat works just fine.

          • bluzdude
            August 22, 2012 4:43 pm

            My mother wielded the wooden spoon on our behinds with the dexterity of a symphony conductor, playing “Red Ass in B Minor.”

      • Jenn
        August 16, 2012 9:41 pm

        wooden spoon? My dad was an industrial arts teacher and he made a fanny whacker.

        had a funny scarey shi*t saying on it that i don’t remember but scared me as a child.

        i saw my mom chase and use it on my brother once. after that all we had to hear was gettinf fanny whacker and in a split second we were in our separate rooms behaving.

        we need more fanny whackers and we need to be able to use them!

  26. Kathy
    August 15, 2012 12:24 pm


  27. TJ
    August 15, 2012 3:41 pm

    I don’t think anyone has commented on this yet:

    “He had no right to chase my son, which it could have been a situation”

    What the hell does that mean? What kind of a situation? Was the kid armed? Was he preparing a standoff if he didn’t wreck? Was she invoking Trayvon? Dumbass! It was a situation you stupid shit!

  28. YinzerInExile
    August 16, 2012 4:22 pm

    When I was 17 I badly misjudged a turn, nicked a curb and busted the rim/broke the bead on the tire of my mother’s car. My boyfriend, who was in the car with me, spent the next hour buying scratch lotto tickets with whatever change we could scrape together from our pockets, hoping that we would win a jackpot that we could then leverage for my life once we called my mother to inform her.

    It wound up being a no harm/no foul/nobody injured and you know what you did wrong situation for which i was not even punished (beyond some serious side-eye and an overarching sense that i was on thin ice with my driving privileges) but that general fear that my mother and father would not hesitate to eat their young should I prove to be a jackass was a defining concern of my childhood and adolescence.

    And they managed to instill it without ever raising a hand to me.

    Shame that kid nearly ruined countless lives–not least his own–because his own parents seem to lack the same dedication.

  29. VAgirl
    August 16, 2012 7:33 pm

    As soon as I saw the “toe cam” during the report I knew it was going to be one of those stories. Mom should be held accountable but probably will not. Lord have mercy on us and our future!

  30. Jim W.
    August 20, 2012 3:22 pm

    How did I miss this? Oh yeah. . . I was on vacation! Go me! But I’m surprised my WTAE app didn’t give some love to it so I could have laughed at Pittsburgh from the comfort of my sand chair in Nags Head.

  31. LisaB
    August 24, 2012 1:55 pm

    Why isn’t there a LIKE button here? Oh well…consider all of your posts “LIKED”.