Authorities say Heather Lynn Sebra (right) is seen on video holding student John Thomas by his shirt after slapping him across his face at a Virginia high school.
WTVR screenshot

A Virginia mother is facing charges of assault after authorities say she hit a black teen who got into a school fight with her son, the New York Daily News reports.

In the video, a Northumberland High School student appears to be slamming the black teen, John Thomas, to the ground before punching him repeatedly. Shortly after the scuffle between the two boys ensues, the mother of the unidentified teen and another individual can be seen pulling the pair apart, only to have the mother, identified as Healther Lynn Sebra, slap John, the black teen, across his face with an open hand.


“You are not gonna call my son a [n—ger], do you understand me?” Sebra can be heard yelling in the video, according to the Daily News.

According to the Daily News, both Sebra and her son are white.

John, WTVR reports, was left confused by the encounter.

“I saw her hand come down, then she hit my face and then she said, ‘He will not call my son the n-word,’” the teen said, adding that he had never used the slur.

John told the news station that the altercation, which occurred before football practice, started when he was talking to another teammate and Sebra's son tried to jump into the conversation. John said he told the boy to mind his business, which embarrassed the boy. The boy left before returning with his mom, who happens to be a football team volunteer.

John's mother, Nicole Thomas, is furious that someone would hit her child in such a manner.


“How dare you?” the outraged mother said of Sebra. “For this woman to restrain my son by holding him by the shirt and then sticking her finger in his face after slapping him.


“Then chastising him for something that he repeatedly said he didn't say; how dare you?” she added. "To abuse, berate, belittle, intimidate and physically attack someone is disgusting. I think it needs to be addressed and think people need to be punished for it and held accountable."

Sebra was charged with assault Wednesday and had a protective order served against her, the Northumberland Sheriff's Office said. A juvenile was also charged in relation to the case.


School Superintendent Rebecca Gates assured the news station that the case would be handled swiftly and justly.

"Obviously, we want to make sure our students are safe," Gates said. "We will have all of the information that we need before we make a fair and honest determination about consequences and what we need to avoid this situation again."


Read more at the New York Daily News and WTVR

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