North Carolina student indicted for kidnapping, assault of teacher in viral incident, charged in 2nd attack

Two weeks after a North Carolina high school student allegedly slapped and threatened a teacher in an incident that was captured on video that went viral, the student has been indicted for kidnapping and assault on a government official, the Forsyth County DA announced Thursday. 

Aquavis Hickman, 17, has also been indicted for the alleged assault of another teacher at the same school — Parkland High School in Winston-Salem, North Carolina — in February. 

“A grand jury was convened last week, last Monday, comprised of members of this community and the grand jury returned two bills of indictment against the defendant now in this case, Aquavis Hickman,” Forsyth County District Attorney Jim O’Neill said at a press conference. 

He said Hickman, who will be charged as an adult, faces second-degree kidnapping charges in the April 15 incident with a female teacher “by unlawfully confining and restraining her without her consent for the purpose of terrorizing her. That defendant was also indicted on that same bill for assault on a government official, that being a teacher, and finally communicating threats against that teacher.” 


Police outside school in NC

Police outside the school where a teacher was attacked by a student on April 15 in North Carolina.  (WGHP)

He said Hickman told the teacher he was going to kill her, and the “threat was made in a manner and under circumstances which would cause a reasonable person to believe that threat was likely to be carried out, and the person threatened believed it would, in fact, be carried out.” 

The viral video shared on social media appeared to show Hickman violently slap his teacher twice amid a profanity-laden rant against her. 

“Do you think that affected me in any way?” the teacher can be heard asking. “Want me to hit you again?” Hickman says, while stepping up and repeating the question. “I don’t want it,” the teacher says, before she is struck again. The hit is so hard that her glasses fly off her face while the teenager continues his profanity-filled rant. 

“Ain’t nobody even coming. You got slapped,” Hickman says. “B—-, go back to teaching.”

He was also indicted on the same charges for the alleged assault on the second teacher in February and was indicted on a misdemeanor count of riot based on allegations Hickman gathered with at least two others and “engaged in a public disturbance, kidnapping the second teacher in this case, attempting to fight him. This disorderly and violent conduct created a clear and present danger of injury to the victim in this case.” 

Forsyth County District Attorney Jim O’Neill

Forsyth County District Attorney Jim O’Neill announced this week that Aquavis Hickman has been indicted by a grand jury for kidnapping and assault on two teachers (WGHP)

“Sheriff Kimbrough, Chief Penn and myself made a promise to this community that we would not tolerate any assaults on our teachers, plain and simple,” O’Neill said. “Nobody should go to work and expect to be assaulted.” 

He added, “We stand with the teachers, we will fight to protect those teachers and if you lay a hand on a teacher and assault a teacher you can expect that the punishment will be swift and severe. Promise made and promise kept.”

Kimbrough, at the press conference, said “everyone sitting in this room owes a debt to the woman or man who educated you: teachers. All of us are who we are because of the men and women that educated us.” 


He added, “How can we in good conscience allow anyone to assault a teacher?” adding, there are “some things in society that have to be sacred,” and “we have to protect the people that educate us.” 

Parkland High School NC

The assault caught on video took place at Parkland High School in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, last month.  (WGHP)

Kimbrough said every day in the community he sees teachers breaking up fights, getting injured and deputies even forced to mace students. 

He said that incidents with students have steadily increased since 2020.

Winston-Salem Police Chief William Penn, Jr. added, “Our schools aren’t a battleground nor a boxing ring … Our schools must be safer.”

He said the video that went viral “put us on the map in a negative manner. I’m also glad today that the rest of the nation will hear that we do not tolerate that in Winston-Salem and in Forsyth County.” 

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