Religion In The News

God Took My Money - Or So I Thought

by Elroy Willis -- August 8, 2004

TUSKEGEE (EAP) -- In what seems to be a unique legal case, a 14-year-old Tuskegee boy is being sued by his mother for emotional and financial damages caused by him pretending to be God via a remote-control tape recorder he planted under the dinner table.

The boy is counter-suing for child abuse because of the beating he received after being found out.

"I was trying to get my mother to stop praying at meals, but my plan sort of backfired," said Toby Adams, who ended up replacing the tape recorder with a walkie-talkie and asking for money and gifts from his mother each night.

"I want all of those things back now that I know my son was just trying to fool me," says Loretta Adams, who says she never thought to look under the table until she started hearing static as well as the voice of God.

"The first voice I heard told me to quit praying and thanking God for the food at the table. I heard it loud and clear, and thought I might be hallucinating, but then the voice repeated itself, so I asked my son if he could also hear the voice."

"I said I also heard it and told my mother that we should follow the advice, thinking that it would put an end to the superstitious praying that she does every day, but I guess that was a mistake, because my mother started praying even more than she did before," Toby said.

"I could hear her praying at the table while I was in bed and decided to put a walkie-talkie under the table and start talking to her directly and telling her to quit praying whenever I could hear her praying at the table."

That didn't work, so greed took over at that point as the Adams boy started giving advice to his mother, and asking for different things to see if she would comply.

It started with a pair of expensive sneakers and the latest Playstation video games and went on from there, all the way down to cash money laid out on the dinner table each night.

"I would sneak down at night while my mother was asleep and take the money, and she thought God was taking it just like Santa drinking the milk and eating the cookies I used to leave out for him," Toby said.

Things took a turn for the worse when the batteries in the walkie-talkie ran low and static started appearing, and it was only then that Loretta Adams looked under the table and found the source of the voices she'd been hearing.

"I went upstairs and took a beltstrap to my son, giving him a good beating for tricking me," she said.

Toby reported the incident to one of his teachers who then reported it to a local child abuse agency which is seeking to have Toby removed from his home for his own protection.

"She might beat me again, and that scares me," Toby told his teacher.

"I'm sorry for tricking my mother, but she won't let it go," he said.


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