British police are disputing the account of a Muslim family that says it was investigated over a spelling mistake made by a 10-year-old boy.
Last month, the boy had written in a school assignment that he lived in a "terrorist house" when he was trying to write "terraced house," his family told the BBC.
Authorities questioned him at home the next day and examined a laptop, the family said.
However, Lancashire Police insist that it was more than a spelling mistake.
"The facts are that a young person disclosed a worrying issue in his school work -- not just that he lived in a 'terrorist house' -- and this was reported through the appropriate channels and subsequently a visit was undertaken by a neighborhood police officer and a social worker," police and crime commissioner Clive Grunshaw said in a written statement.
Grunshaw said the incident was not investigated as a matter of terrorism.
"In the event, there was no further action needed, but if the school and police had not acted then they would have been failing in their duty to respond to concerns," Grunshaw said.
The boy's family remains skeptical.
"It's a joke because if a white kid had said it they would never have acted in this way," the father, speaking through a son who translated, told the Telegraph. "It's because he's a Muslim kid and the parents can't speak much English, they have taken advantage."
The boy's father told the newspaper that the child was sick with stress over the incident, and the family wants an apology.
The police's actions were also mocked on social media:
The incident has fueled criticism of a law passed last year that requires schools to report on suspected terrorist behavior as well as signs of extremism,
"There are huge concerns that individuals going about their daily life are being seen through the lens of security and are being seen as potential terrorists rather than students," Miqdaad Versi, assistant secretary-general of the Muslim Council of Britain, told the BBC.
In October, a 10-year-old boy in Birmingham, England, was questioned by police after complaining about the lack of a prayer room on a school trip and saying female students should keep their faces covered, according to the Telegraph.
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