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The family of bullied Keaton Jones has faced a backlash online following allegations they’ve been asking for money and have racist views.

A Facebook video of the US schoolboy talking about being bullied went viral earlier this week and celebrities posted their support.

But now they’ve faced online criticism after photos emerged allegedly showing the family with Confederate flag.

His mum Kimberly Jones has told ABC News: “We’re not racists.”

A-list stars including Justin Bieber, Chris Evans and Millie Bobby Brown have all sent messages of support to Keaton.

But photos have emerged allegedly showing his family with a Confederate flag.

The flag is controversial as it was first introduced in the US Civil War by the states fighting to keep slavery legal and some see it as a symbol of racial hatred.

Tweet by Tariq Nasheed

In an interview with ABC News, Kimberly said the photo with flag was meant to be “ironic, funny, extreme”.

“I am genuinely, truly sorry. If I could take it back I would.”

People have also been questioning Kimberly’s motives when someone using the Instagram account KimberlyJones_38 started asking for donations for her son off the back of all the media coverage.

It linked to a paypal account and a GoFundMe page.

It is not clear whether the real Kimberly Jones was behind it. BBC Newsbeat has approached her for comment but she has not responded.

It is not unusual for people to set up fake donation pages off the back of high-profile causes.

Social media users, believing this to be Keaton’s mother, started to criticise her for trying to make money out of her son’s situation.

Tweet by Curve Gotti

MMA fighter Joe Schilling posted an exchange on Instagram he had with the same user where he said he was asked for money.

Again there was no verification that this was actually Keaton’s mother.

All content on the @KimberlyJones_38 account has now been deleted and a woman claiming to be Keaton’s sister, Lakyn Jones, insisted on Twitter it is fake.

She said: “We haven’t received any money and don’t plan on it. The GoFundMe’s aren’t by any of us.”

Lakyn Jones tweet

The account also denied allegations the family was racist.

She said: “Those who know me and my family know we aren’t racist. My brother doesn’t say the “N” word. Please leave it alone.”

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BBC News – US & Canada

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