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Husband charged in assistant principal's death

Posted May 25, 2009

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— Moore County authorities charged a Carthage man Monday with shooting and killing his wife, an assistant principal at Pinecrest High School.

Deputies received a report of a shooting Sunday at 333 Baughn Trail. When they arrived at the residence, they found Abigail "Abby" Alexander Baughn, 36, dead from a gunshot wound to the head, authorities said.

'Well-liked' assistant principal dead; husband charged Assistant principal dead; husband charged

Investigators arrested her husband, Randy Martin Baughn, 38, early Monday and charged him with murder. He was being held without bond in the Moore County Detention Center, and his first court appearance is scheduled for June 1.

Abby Baughn attended Moore County schools, and teaching became her life's passion, according to those who knew her.

"Every time I interacted with Abby, there was that positive, uplifting kind of spirit. She had that look in her face every time you would see her," Moore County Schools Superintendent Susan Purser said. "Even in difficult times, Abby was Abby. She was a joy."

Abby Baughn was an assistant principal for 11th and 12th grades at Pinecrest High for the past two years, school district spokesman Tim Lussier said. She started work in the district in 1999 as an Exceptional Children teacher at Union Pines High School and later became the director of the program, he said.

Enola Lineberger, president of the Pinecrest High PTA, said Abby Baughn was involved in almost all school activities but still took time to help students.

"My oldest son, Pete, he’s a senior this year, and he had a few little issues," Lineberger said. "She really sat down and talked with him, and she encouraged him (that), if he had a problem, to stop by and see her again. I was appreciative of that, as a mom, that she would reach out to him like that."

Friends said Abby Baughn also taught Sunday school at Bethlehem Baptist Church in town and her husband was choir director at the church.

Lineberger said she saw Randy Baughn attend some Pinecrest High athletic events with his wife and said most people in the community are stunned by the shooting.

"We’re all just in shock, and as the circumstances unfolded, it just made it doubly tragic," she said.

Authorities haven't released any information about a possible motive for the shooting.

Pinecrest High was out Monday for Memorial Day, and officials said they would have additional guidance counselors and social workers on hand when classes resume Tuesday to help students and staff cope with the slaying.

"She has touched the lives of so many individuals," Purser said. "I’ve even spoken to people (who) remember Abby when they taught her."


This story is closed for comments.

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  • Jack Flash May 27, 2009

    Jackflash, with all due respect, how can you use the terms "heinous" and "life altering mistake" in the same context? ...he wont be being judged on his previous public character...if he is indeed guilty, yes I can dismiss a murderer easily and make no apologies for it despite whom his previous character implied he was."

    That's easy enough for you to say about a total stranger, and it's a pretty cowardly and unsympathetic thing to say to someone who actually knew him and is reeling from the shock immediately thereafter.
    No one was advocating that his previous character be taken into account in administering justice. It is not being soft on crime or in any other way compromising justice to feel sadness for the death not only of a well-liked woman, but also of a man with potential.

  • NC Native11 May 26, 2009

    I really think this is an epidemic. It happens alot. It's sickening. Why do men kill their wives? I wish I knew the answer.

  • Professor May 26, 2009

    Well at least they got the person that took this good teachers life. My condolences to the families.

  • ambidextrous cat May 26, 2009

    When an 11-year-old and a 13-year-old who shot a teacher and classmates in Jonesboro, Arkansas in 1998 are called "gunmen," they have had a sick, sad, and inaccurate adulthood bestowed upon them.

    Being a man has to mean something different---for all our sakes."

    I Agree.

  • fuzzmom May 26, 2009

    My thoughts and prayers are not only with this family, but also with the community. First the nursing home and now this? So much tragedy in such a small community in such a short period of time. . .

  • janmaria67 May 26, 2009

    My son is a senior at Pinecrest and loved Ms. Baughn. She had a gift for dealing with students and their issues. She was a great influence in my son's life. This is a such a tragedy.

  • NC Reader May 26, 2009

    anneonymousone -- As usual, you have written very eloquently. I'm sorry that you have had such terrible experiences in your life, but I'm glad that you have been able to use those horrible experiences to speak with such compassion about the human condition.

  • ecugirl83 May 26, 2009

    My mom knew her professionally. Said she was a joy to work with.

  • kellyaustin96 May 26, 2009

    How people act in the confines of their homes, sometimes is far different from how they portray themselves to the outside world.

    To sit here and prejudge either individual without having the facts is pretty shallow.

  • angimomma May 26, 2009

    Jackflash, with all due respect, how can you use the terms "heinous" and "life altering mistake" in the same context? A murder is not a "oops, I should have gone to college" type of wrong turn in life move. Obviously all the facts arent out yet, but lets face it, he wont be being judged on his previous public character and the fact of the matter is, that who he portrayed himself to be publicly possibly could be far different than how he was in reality behind closed doors. The police must have had a reason for suspecting and arresting him, could he be innocent? Maybe, and I concede that. But if he is indeed guilty, yes I can dismiss a murderer easily and make no apologies for it despite whom his previous character implied he was.