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EXCLUSIVE: Mother of 11-year-old arson suspect speaks out

Offers apology to man whose home was destroyed
Posted at 6:10 PM, Mar 28, 2017

The mother of an 11-year old child accused of setting a home on fire is now speaking out.

The home belonged to a Pasco County 911 dispatch supervisor.

RELATED: Authorities: 911 dispatch supervisor working when his Pasco County home was set on fire

The mother is not only apologizing to the victim and his kids, but also shedding light on what may have led her son to do something so hurtful and dangerous.

The mother feels her son should face repercussions but also said it's her son's choice of friends that led to the worse decision of his young life.

"Imagine standing there and watching your 11-year-old being detained that was just heartbreaking," she said.

RELATED: Pasco County deputies arrest two for robbery/arson of 911 dispatch supervisor's home

To protect her son's identity, Action News is hiding the mother's face and not sharing her name. Throughout much of our conversation, she wiped away tears.

"I feel horrible as a parent," she said.

And from one mother to a father, she's begging for forgiveness. Her 11-year-old and a 12-year-old neighbor face arson and theft charges, for destroying Nathan William's home.

"I am so so sorry but I want him to please understand that my son is not a violent person," she said.

It is hard for William's to believe that, his house is unlivable. He has two young boys of his own. They weren't home but he nearly lost his dog, crews rescued him in the knick of time after the fire was set in February.

"This really was a horrible circumstance and bad decision making. He befriended his bully and that is the most heartbreaking thing," said the mother.

She said it blindsided her. She suffers from Lupus and thought Florida could provide a better environment, they just moved to New Port Richey and live steps away from William's home.

"My child he was just so desperate for friends," said the mother.

She's hoping the judge will have mercy. Her attorney, Joe Hobson plans on using bullying as part of the defense urging for a diversion program.

"We hope that we can get through this by it being a life lesson and not a life trauma," said Hobson.

Hobson, has worked hundreds of criminal cases involving kids. He said this one has challenges beyond the gravity of the crime. Williams is a Pasco county 911 dispatch supervisor, and saw his own home pop up on the screen at work.
Sympathy is on his side

"It can't help but sway public opinion," said Hobson.

But this mom also hopes for understanding.

"I want him to know he has a chance to rebuild from this and that this not going to end his life," said the mom.

Due to privacy laws we could not reach the 12-year-old's family.

Action News did speak to Williams. He said he has nothing to say to the mom but wants to thank the public who donated items and money and also the county who helped him find him a new home.

The 11-year-old's case may not be decided until fall.