Southern States Violent Crime

Young Man Dies In Crash While Fleeing From Police, Mom Says “It’s not the police’s fault”

A Daytona Beach mother spoke about how she’s had to deal after her son was killed in a motorcycle crash while fleeing from police.

Terica Charles said it was early Monday morning when police came knocking at her home to let her know Rodney Baker, 24, had been killed.

“They said the motorcycle he was on was stolen and that he died fleeing from the police, and I kind of lost it at that point,” Charles said.

Police said Baker stole the motorcycle from a restaurant in Holly Hill and drove to Daytona Beach where he was met by police. They said he sped off to avoid a traffic stop and crashed a short time later right off the International Speedway bridge.

Charles said she later learned from her son’s friends why he did it.

“He stole that motorcycle on a dare,” she said. “I can’t believe it had turned into a decision where he had lost his life.”

Broken from what happened, Charles took to Facebook to post a 17-minute message to anyone who would listen. The video has been viewed now more than 41,000 times.

“It’s not the police’s fault that my son crashed that motorcycle,” she says in the video. “He crashed that motorcycle in an effort to not go to jail.”

Charles said her son had been going down the wrong path for years. She said she’s now using his story so others can learn from his mistakes.

“I want parents to be honest with themselves about what our kids are actually doing,” she said. “I want parents to not make excuses for what our kids are doing, and try to figure out how we can help them.”

Charles said she’s planning to start a parent support group to help the community find a place where they can relate and share their stories.

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