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Chicago Grandmother Shoots Troublesome 12-Year-Old

Photo Courtesy - WLS/ABC News(CHICAGO) -- Is the gun-wielding widow who wounded a menacing 12-year-old boy a hero or a dangerous granny with a gun who over-reacted? That's the debate stirred by the actions of an elderly woman on Chicago's South Side.

On Tuesday, Margaret Matthews, 68, decided she'd had enough of two young boys, ages 12 and 13, who she said had been harassing her in her home for more than a year. When she returned to her home from grocery shopping that day, she noticed broken windows and the two boys running away.

When they returned, the widowed grandmother stood on her porch and confronted them. Allegedly, they replied by hurling bricks and rocks at her. She said one hit her in the chest.

She called police, but worried they might come too late, so she said she went back outside and fired at the boys, wounding the 12-year-old in the shoulder.

"I was either going to be a victim or a villain," Matthews told ABC News. "I did what I had to do to protect myself."

Police agreed and decided not to charge Matthews. The boys face charges of aggravated assault. 

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

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