Timothy Hall and Jalen Parrish were friends, Hall's mother said, recalling how the teen often came over for dinner, even slept at their Turners Station home.
But the two 15-year-olds had a falling-out last year, said Daphne Tull, Hall's mother. Their feuding came to a head Monday night when police said Parrish stabbed Hall in the chest with a knife near his home in the 600 block of N. Avondale Road, according to charging documents.
On Wednesday, Baltimore County police charged Parrish as an adult with first-degree murder. No one answered at Parrish's home on Walnut Road, around the corner from Hall's home, and no attorney was listed in court records.
Police wrote in charging documents that Hall bullied Parrish, taunting him on social media sites. In one post, police said, Hall claimed "to have taken food from Parrish's back porch refrigerator without permission."
But Tull described her son as a "loving, sweet" boy, affectionately known as "Big Tim."
A sophomore at Dundalk High School, he played linebacker for a local rec league football team, she said. He loved working on bikes, and looked forward to getting his driver's license. He wanted a dirt bike for Christmas.
"He didn't deserve this," Tull said.
Hall's death is the fourth in a violent eight days for Baltimore County, which has had 18 homicides this year. Last year, the county reported just 19, though in past years it has seen closer to 30 killings.
Before Hall's stabbing, police were called early Monday to a Rosedale apartment, where an attacker left Charles Mitter, 39, dead and Tyray Wise, 26, injured. She later died at the hospital. On Aug. 17, police found 30-year-old Ramel Keith Baker suffering from gunshot wounds in the 8700 block of Loch Bend Drive in Parkville. He was pronounced dead at a hospital.
Police have not announced arrests or motives in those cases.
In the Turners Station stabbing, police said, Hall and Parrish and others had been hanging out at a playground on Avondale Road when Parrish grabbed a thin, black metal pole and began swinging it, striking Hall several times in the head. Witnesses said the lightweight pole had little effect on Hall.
Parrish walked into the street, telling Hall, "If you come out here, I'm gonna kill you," witnesses told police.
According to charging documents, Hall followed him into the street, where Parrish struck Hall in the chest with a knife. Hall fell to the ground, then got on his bicycle and tried to peddle away but fell again and lost consciousness.
Parrish ran from the scene, but witnesses later identified him, police said.
During an interview with detectives, Parrish said he struck Hall with a metal pole several times and challenged him to a fight in the street, but he denied stabbing Hall or having a knife.
Before the ambulance left, Tull said she asked her son to raise his arm, which she said he did. "He knew I was there," she said.
Hall died the next day at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, after undergoing surgery, his family said.
At the playground, balloons, teddy bears and candles were left by family and friends. A candlelight vigil was to be held at the scene Wednesday night, Tull said.
Baltimore Sun reporter Carrie Wells contributed to this article.