Winston-Salem teacher accused of touching students speaks out

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. -- A Winston-Salem teacher accused of inappropriately touching students says the alleged assaults never happened.

Samuel Erick McClain, an English teacher at Carver High School, was arrested over the weekend and charged with two counts of misdemeanor simple assault. He’s accused of patting two male students on their rear ends several months ago.

However, McClain says the students made the allegations up.

“These students, they run and cry wolf all the time. Teachers did this, teachers did that. When is someone going to stand up for the teachers? I'm the victim. If you ask me, I'm the victim. I'm the one who had my name slandered,” said McClain.

Police say the two students are 10th and 11th graders at Carver High School. McClain says one of the students was in his classroom to look at a test score.

“Once he realized that he passed, I pat him on his shoulder and said congratulations,” said McClain. “The other young man, I have no clue where that other allegation is coming from.”

McClain and his Greensboro attorney, Kevin Dowling, plan to fight the allegations in court, but they worry the damage has already been done.

“He has been branded. To get his reputation back is going to be extremely difficult. Even with an exoneration, he's going to have problems,” said Dowling.

McClain’s court date has been set for June 25.

Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools sent a statement to FOX8 Monday:

“The district learned of the arrest Sunday afternoon, and Superintendent Beverly Emory has suspended McClain with pay. The district first learned of allegations against McClain in January, and he was suspended with pay on Jan. 17 while the Winston-Salem Police Department investigated. Parents were notified of the investigation at that time.

State law limits school districts from suspending employees with pay for more than 90 days. Mr. McClain returned to the classroom on April 21; at the time, the district did not have evidence to take further action against Mr. McClain. After the arrest, Emory suspended McClain and will consider further action as necessary.

McClain began teaching at Carver and WS/FCS in August 2013. That has been his only employment in the district.”

Filed in: News

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  • FaithC

    If he is found to be innocent and these kids made this up what is their punishment going to be?
    They should be made to write a public letter of apology and place it in a half page ad in the Sunday issue of the local paper for 4 week running admitting what they have done, they should both be suspended, they should have criminal charges brought against both of them and because they are under the age of 18 their parents should have to pay this man a court determined amount of money.
    Kids need to see there will be punishment for this kind of behavior.

    • FaithC

      Fox8 I did not post this above comment at all. I ask that you take it down. As far as I am concerned he’s guilty.

      • FaithC

        The first comment is mine. We all know that Me is really another name you use. Not man enough to use the same name all the time. JethRO, Jethro Bodink, or whatever you call yourself today I guess this is your new thing, saying my posts are not mine. You are a sick sorry man and you need to get a life. Everyone on here knows it is you posting under my name and then you post nasty comments to your original one. We all know it is you, so get help.

    • Danny

      I can’t believe it. I actually agree with Faith for a change. I personally think that if he is found innocent, which I believe he is. Those two boys and their respectable parents, or lack there of, should have to stand in front of the school and court house with a sign. It should say , ” I am a lying, conniving monster that has publicly defiled Mr. McClain’s name. I should be thrown in prison but the court system spared me for some unknown reason and every time someone thinks Mr. McClain is a pedifile. I should get 100 strikes with a cane pole! “

      • Sunshine

        Why punish the parents ?????????? Kids are out of control now a days due to society — Parents do not raise their kids anymore ! We are not allowed to !!!!!

  • Rose

    I honestly believe this man. You can tell a lot by his body language when he is defending himself. If he is found innocent which I hope he is if the allegations are untrue, the boys will most likely serve some kind of juvenile time or community service for lying to the police/filing a false report… something like that hopefully.

  • RCC

    Sadly, this man, even if he isn’t convicted, will have to live with this stigma the rest of his life. The boys will get off without any punishment whatsoever.

    The same thing happened to my husband and the girl that accused him didn’t even have the audacity to show up for court. She couldn’t face her own lies.

    It’s time to stop the war on men!

  • j r nance (@rnance1950)

    Why would anybody believe these Kids Every Single Time, seems to me they have to have certain Facts even to Blame somebody for these allegations because like he said he’s probably Ruined for Life & these 2 people will probably not even have to testify but I guarantee they would have to testify at my trial because I wouldn’t do any Plea Bargaining If I were truly innocent, I would definitely put both of those Kids through the ringer, dates, time, How it happened, who seen him touch the kids, etc, etc, yep I would definitely go to court over this one myself IF I were innocent….

    • RCC

      Sadly, when it comes to children, a man is guilty no matter what. My husband was “convicted” of se*ual misconduct with his ex-step-daughter 7 years after he was no longer in her life. CPS said he was guilty because a “forensic psychologist” said he did it. The “forensic psychologist” interviewed the mother who also said he did the same thing to 3 other girls before she interviewed the ex-step-daughter. My husband took polygraph test and passed with “flying colors”. He submitted the polygraph results to law enforcement and CPS. Law enforcement dropped the case, but CPS still “substantiated” it because, and I am making a direct quote here, “When it comes to children it’s better to be safe than sorry.” The “child” in question was 6 months from her 18th birthday. The mother wanted a 2nd degree ra*ist to adopt my step-son, but this only came out after CPS substantiated the case. We had to pay $1000 to a lawyer to keep my husband’s name off the RIL, which is a list of people whom CPS has deemed guilty, with or without a trial, of abuse or neglect. Come to find out, CPS had hid the true details of her “tale.” What she said he did was a physical impossibility. Not improbable, IMPOSSIBLE! She either fantasized about her step-father, or her mother convinced it actually happened. The girl didn’t even have the guts to face him in court with her lies. She, along with her mother, are still walking around without any penalty whatsoever. The ordeal still haunts us.

  • annewilliams

    parents put their boys up to this because they talk about everybody and their mama!!!

  • edith

    FIRST OF ALL THIS WAS MY 7th grade teacher I’ve known him for a while he would never try something smart with no student he has a wife and kids he wouldnt do anything they wouldn’t want his kids to go through. He is a family man McClain knows better and will do better . teachers aren’t the bad people and I am a student its not the teachers it never is . its the student and always will be McClain will never do such thing . I believe in you Mr.McClain and miss you we will get through this . he is innocent

      • news2me

        @Bobsbob, Hopefully you are not a teacher at all.

        This child was expressing herself and need not be bullied or made fun of online.

        I know that if she tells one of her teachers of her post, the teacher will then help her correct her grammatical mistakes and thus she will learn from any mistakes.

        How was your writings when you were that age?

        You never make derogatory remarks to a person, especially a younger one. You always try to help them do better the next time around.

      • news2me

        @ Bobsbob
        It is a little early in the morning even for grown-ups to write correctly.

        My post should be CORRECTED to read…

        How WERE your writings when you were that age?

    • Zombiekiller

      Apparently you don’t read the news much little one. This kind of thing happens all the time and surprise, the teachers OFTEN are guilty. We can leave this up to a jury of his peers.

    • Tracey

      I might not be true of this teacher, but don’t say its not true of all teachers. “its not the teachers it never is” , because sometimes it is the teacher as with my third grader and there was plenty of evidence and children affected before they moved that teacher to another district. So don’t assume just because he is a teacher, priest, monk or nun, that they are innocent!!

  • John Smith

    High school students can and will do anything- and we were the same at their age. Basically every teacher will be accused during their career. This man may very well be completely innocent of all charges!!!!!

    • Sunshine

      NO John we were not ALL the same at that AGE ! We grew up scared to tell a lie, we grew up to learn how to respect our elders..My parents told me what I could and could NOT do.. Not society, not the school system.. I knew if i did wrong, there would be Conscience to my actions. If i were to get my tail beat, my parents to not have to worry about the police or social services showing up at their door. Kid now cry wolf way to many times. Then when someone really needs the help, everyone turns the other cheek.. Its a MESSED up world we live in.. I pray for straight for all the family’s involved..

      • Tracey

        We also grow up too scare to tell the truth if is was happening, because they were the grown ups and everyon beleived the grown-ups over the children so we left our children unprotected and ashamed. That’s why we have so many screwed adults!

      • Zombiekiller

        Spot on Tracey. I don’t care if he was cool and didn’t do wrong to 1000’s of kids, if he was inappropriate with 1 thats all that matters. We shall see how this plays out in court.

  • Martha

    I have always said a lot of the allegations were made up and unfortunately once the damage is done it can’t be undone. I think girls flirt with the teachers and when they don’t get a response then they make up their stories. I think students get mad at a grade, but forget the fact that they haven’t paid attention in class or studied and then they make up allegations on the teacher. I have no idea who this teacher is but I believe he is innocent based on this story.

  • Cassie

    I used to be a teacher and I had students lie on me. If they don’t get the grades they want or they think you favor someone over them, they try to get even. I am not a person to just take the word of the child or the adult. I like to get all parties together to see what really happened. That is what the school system should have done before having charges filed. Pressure from the school or community caused the DA to pursue the case with NO evidence. They put it out to the media in order to see if they could get other “victims” to come forward. Watch this die (on their end) when the allegation can’t be substantiated.
    On another note, I too know Samuel McClain and have for close to 24 years and I don’t believe he is lying. I am not being biased, I know when he is lying, and he was not lying in his interview. We have lost contact for a few years, but I know him LIKE A BROTHER! We even taught together… All he ever wanted to do was gain the trust of kids because we dealt with at-risk students. That is a hard task, and once you master it, it is hard to change your style again. Praying the truth comes out and justice is served!

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