The white woman nationally known and locally heckled as “Cornerstore Caroline” now says she’s sorry for falsely accusing a 9-year-old black boy of sexually assaulting her.
The delayed apology came from Theresa Klein on Friday night, after she watched surveillance footage from the Sahara Deli clearly showing the boy’s backpack brushing up against her as she ordered at the counter. And apparently, half the block was there as well, to give commentary as the stone-faced Klein watched the footage.
Afterward, Klein told News 12 Brooklyn, “I was wrong.”
“The child accidentally brushed me,” she said, as laughter erupted from the rest of the deli. “Young man, I don’t know your name, but I’m sorry.”
Neighbors told the local news outlet that sorry wasn’t enough, especially given how traumatized the little boy was after being falsely accused. Klein claimed to be calling the cops on the child—police later told local news outlets they never received a call from the Sahara Deli—and said she herself was a cop.
That also was a lie.
In fact, just hours earlier, Klein had doubled down on her accusations to Pix11.
“I was standing at the counter, and I was sexually assaulted,” Klein told Pix11 on Friday afternoon. “I understand how it looks but [the boy’s mother] escalated and then I lost my temper at her not at that child.”
When Klein tried to spin her story to say her fake 911 call was really about the mother’s reaction, the reporter reminded her that she had called 911 to report a sexual assault.
“As far as I could tell from the way it felt on my butt, that’s what had happened,” Klein responded, adding, “It’s not the first time I’ve been grabbed on the ass by a kid.”
That portion of the video didn’t make the Pix11 news footage, but was shared by reporter Andrew Ramos on his Twitter account.
And that’s not the only detail Klein got wrong. She also accused the boy’s mother of saying she was a police officer, when in fact, Klein was the one who made that (presumably false) statement—on video.
When a reporter told Klein she was the one who claimed to be a cop, Klein replied, “I did not say that, if I did say that I would be surprised.”
At one point, a small group of Klein’s neighbors, clearly fed up with her bullshit, interrupted her Pix11 interview, telling the reporter that Klein has a history of calling the cops on people. That seemed to be verified not only by Klein herself, who says she’s called 911 several times on people harassing her since the video came out, but by Pix11 reporter Andrew Ramos, who shared video of Klein calling the cops on him and another reporter when they first attempted to get an interview.
Meanwhile, Klein’s neighbors, including Jason Littlejohn, the man who recorded the viral video, say they’re just concerned with making sure the little boy she falsely accused is OK. Littlejohn’s video shows the young boy and his sister wailing as Klein confronts their mother and calls the “police.”
“It broke my heart,” Littlejohn, who is himself a father, said. “ The second I saw that little boy crying, it broke my heart.”