DA says high schooler who slapped teacher twice in face will be tried as an adult

A North Carolina district attorney said the high schooler caught on a viral cellphone video slapping a teacher in the face last month will be tried as an adult.

According to Forsyth County District Attorney Jim O’Neill, the student in question — 17-year-old Aquavious Hickman — stated he would kill the female Parkland High School teacher, WRAL-TV reported.

What’s the background?

In the April 15 video, the teacher remains seated and offers no resistance as the student slaps her twice in the face; the second slap sends the teacher’s glasses flying.

“The f***’s wrong with you?” the student asks the teacher after the physical attack. “What you gonna do, still sit in that chair ’cause you a bitch … ain’t nobody even coming, you got slapped, bitch go back to teaching …”


At that time, when asked if he would try the student as an adult, O’Neill noted to WGHP-TV that he cannot bring the case to superior court because the charges are only misdemeanors.

However, WRAL noted in its Monday morning report that a grand jury returned the “true bills of indictment” last week against the juvenile for second-degree kidnapping of a teacher by unlawfully confining and restraining her without her consent for the purpose of terrorizing her. Second-degree kidnapping is a felony under state law.

The juvenile also was indicted on the original charges of assault on a government official and communicating threats, WRAL said.

In addition, the juvenile was indicted for second-degree kidnapping of a teacher in a separate incident, WRAL reported, adding that on Feb. 1 he unlawfully confined and restrained a male teacher without consent to terrorize him. The juvenile also was charged with misdemeanor riots in connection with the Feb. 1 incident, during which O’Neill said he didn’t act alone, WGHP said in a separate story.


Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools Superintendent Tricia McManus told WGHP soon after the slaps caught on video that a district hearing would determine consequences for the student — and McManus said she would recommend expulsion.

Additional allegation

Also last month, a former Parkland substitute teacher told WGHP in another story that the student who slapped the teacher twice in the face physically attacked him last year.

Larry Edwards — who has about 40 years of teaching experience and taught at the high school for about 13 years before retiring and becoming a substitute teacher there — told WGHP the student pushed him in the head.

“I was appalled,” Edwards told the station, noting that he was subbing for a biology class in early May 2023 when the student gave him another student’s name and wasn’t supposed to be in the class.


Edwards told the station he reported the alleged assault that day, writing an affidavit and presenting it to high school administrators: “The principal was very apologetic. … About a month later, I got this letter from downtown, the juvenile office … I anxiously awaited a day for the court so I could see him in the courtroom because I just wanted to face him.”

But Edwards said he was told authorities went a different route, adding to WGHP that he believes it was “sort of swept under the rug.”

A district spokesperson told the station regarding Edwards’ claims that federal law mandates that student discipline records are private and cannot be shared, and the district cannot comment.

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