Police call death of beloved NC teacher ‘suspicious’


Maggie Daniels

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NEWTON, N.C. — Police are investigating the death of a 31-year-old teacher in Newton and are calling the death suspicious, according to WSOC-TV.

“I had actually talked to her just yesterday around 10 and (it’s) very shocking that she’s gone the next day,” student Donavan Ramey said.

Students and neighbors are stunned to learn about the death of Maggie Daniels. The counselor was found unresponsive Saturday morning at her home on West 17th Street in Newton. Police have no suspects in the case.

“I heard someone scream ‘She’s not breathing,’” neighbor Annie Sifford said.

Sifford tried to help, running into her neighbor’s home.

“When we got there she was already deceased,” Sifford said.

Sifford told me Daniels was an avid runner and was well-known in the neighborhood from her work in the school district. She was a beloved teacher and basketball coach, who decided to pursue a master’s degree in counseling at Appalachian State University. She spent the last year at Discovery High School, helping students.

“Her life was an agenda to her,” Ramey said. “It was get this done, get that done.”

“She was always professional,” Marian Dillingham said. “She was always nice.”

Those who knew Daniels want answers. Channel 9 watched as investigators spent hours going through the home, collecting evidence. They’re calling the death suspicious. And they’re not ruling anything out yet.

“It’s actually surreal—it’s a shock to know that such a young life (is) gone away that fast,” Dillingham said.

The district released this statement:

“Maggie was an amazing teacher, colleague, and role model. She was an inspiration to all who knew her. We are heartbroken for her family as she was our family as well in Newton-Conover. “
-David Stegall, superintendent with Newton-Conover City Schools

Daniels was the teacher of the year in 2011.

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