Mother, boyfriend accused of beating up drug dealer appear in court

Monika Spraggins (Source: Shelby County Sheriff's Department)
Monika Spraggins (Source: Shelby County Sheriff's Department)
Larry Malone (Source: Shelby County Sheriff's Department)
Larry Malone (Source: Shelby County Sheriff's Department)

By Ben Watson - bio | email

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - A Memphis mother and her boyfriend appeared in court Tuesday on charges they beat up a man who was selling drugs to her son.

Monika Spraggins and her boyfriend, Larry Malone, faced video arraignment wearing jail clothes and worried looks.  Police claim the pair was involved in a fight with their neighbor, Howard Mitchell, in a rooming house they all reside in.

According to investigators, the fight started when Spraggins accused Mitchell of selling marijuana to her teenage son.  During the ensuing fight, Mitchell was struck over the head with the leg of a chair.  Mitchell was treated for his injuries at a local hospital after the fight.

"I saw about three police cars and he was sitting on the porch with his head down," said neighbor Eric Cole. "He was bleeding from his head"

The attack by Spraggins and Malone has touched off a big debate in their neighborhood about how far a parent should go to protect their kids from drugs.  However, Mitchell has denied selling drugs to Spraggins' teenager.  And Rodney Severance, the manager of the rooming house, claimed he doesn't know "anything" about drug sales in his building.

"I want to put this on record and let everyone let everyone know that there is no illegal activity, drug dealing, or anything that I know about," he said.

Meanwhile Spraggins and Malone remained in jail Tuesday, with bond set at $1,000 and $5,000 respectively.  They are scheduled to be back in court next month.

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