Local News

Selma man accused of assaulting driver's ed teacher

Posted July 12, 2010

— A Selma man is facing charges after a driver's education teacher was assaulted while dropping a student off Friday afternoon.

Anthony Barbour, a Smithfield-Selma High coach and driver's ed teacher, told authorities that he was punched in the face through the window of the car while turning around in the driveway of a home on Old Smith Road.

Barbour also said that the suspect fired a rifle over his car three times as he tried to drive away.

After an investigation, Thad Edward Smith, 35, of Old Smith Road, was charged with assault in connection with the incident, authorities said.

Smith was convicted last year of threatening to shoot the tires on a woman's car who was searching in the neighborhood for her lost dog, authorities said.


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  • robcpuman Jul 14, 2010

    whess, guns are made for shooting. Killing is what happens when a PERSON points the gun at a living being and they are struck by the projectile.
    Baseball bats are made for swinging, they are a weapon too. They are also used for killing when a PERSON points the bat at a living being and they are struck, repeatedly.

    By the way, I'm also an Engineer.
    I hope you understand, but judging by most of your responses I understand if you don't.

  • jenni92080 Jul 13, 2010

    he has a high school diploma so get off of the ged joke

  • john283594 Jul 13, 2010

    "back of your truck or GED's."

    Nice try. I have a MA from UNCG.

  • KevInApex Jul 13, 2010


    Whether you really know the guy or not(sorry on these forums you cannot take such things for granted) you raise a good point.
    Even if the guy wants to get help he may not have the resources to get it. What the state offers now is a joke and private resources are very expensive.

    Our culture just offers too few options for people with mental issues so people like this guy and others sometimes just fester until something ugly happens.

  • BullsEye Jul 13, 2010


    I'm not forcing my ideas on anyone. I stated a fact: Guns are a weapon for killing!

    If there is something untrue about this statement, then please let me know.

  • wildcat Jul 13, 2010

    This man is dangerous to society and seem like he has mental issues. The courts should put him away for a long while and get him some help.

  • frosty Jul 13, 2010


    Sorry to hear about Thad's problems. It can be very frustrating when someone you care needs help and will not seek it. And the fact that they cannot be made to go. But perhaps he will as a result of this be required to do so. But a good result is hard when the person is made to go. But we can hope.

    How may psychologists does it take to change a light bulb? Only one but the bulb really has to want to change.

    Sorry for the levity. but it does apply sometimes.


    Maybe you are a dangerous person.

    There are people who throughout history have attempted to enforce their morality on others weather they liked it or not through religion, government, finance, and/or personal force.

    And independent people, armed or not, have been a pain in their tails
    s. And oddly enough it seems to be a god given trait. As the founders alluded to in the documents that founded this country.

    OK now it seems I have added religion and politics to a simple conversation about a simple assault. Sorr

  • BullsEye Jul 13, 2010

    Yeah Leo, I am a dangerous citizen. Not owning a gun makes me an imediate threat to the community. Actually, I'm surprised that I am not on the FBI's Most Wanted List.

    And Jackie- I've never been beaten by anyone with a belt buckle and moustache. However by the way you talk about pistol-whipping on a blog, I take it you have a few bad memories of the high school cafeteria.

    GWALLY- Clueless liberal? Really? Pretty good assesment of my political affiliation.

    I'm willing to bet the suspect that assaulted the Driver's Ed. teacher has the exact same mindset as all of you.

    "It's my right to have these guns. They gon hav' to pry em' from my cold dead hands."

    Is that about right?

  • jenni92080 Jul 13, 2010

    I know Thad, personally. I am not excusing what he did but he has problems. He has had problems with people on his property before. I know that he screwed up big time but don't judge him. He just needs to be left alone. I am sorry to Mr. Barbour for what Thad did. He is mentally unstable and has been since he lost his wife and 2 children. If you had been through what Thad has been through you would understand the problems he has. His family loves him and wants him to be ok. We can not make him get help. All we can do is leave him alone until he decides to deal with the trama that has happened to him. Please don't send me all kinds of hate mail because I know he was wrong. He is sick!! There are many Americans that suffer from a mental illness, should we put all of them "down"? Just for the record, he is not on drugs. He has been dealt a messed up hand.

  • frosty Jul 13, 2010

    to continue,

    One word in the golf comment had to be changed to get past the filter. You can guess which.

    The gun has been a game changer in history. What other device has made a relatively defenseless person with little or no training able to inflict serious or lethal damage to an attacker? This country's existence is based on that.

    Time to get off that soap, or is it cartridge, box.

    The man while threatening to use a gun on people did not. The fact that he did not says something.

    It would seem that he has some major insecurity issues or just wants to really, really be left alone.

    There will be more to the story I hope. Though I doubt there will news coverage on it. Hopefully the root cause can be found and addressed.

    Two other questions;

    If the drive ed teacher was not a celebrity would the story have run?

    And does any agitated person take a good mug shot? (How did your last driver license photo turn out?)(Sorry that was three questions.)