HBCU Student Arrested For 'Not Apologizing' To White Professor After Classroom Argument
A Black student was arrested at Winston-Salem State University on Tuesday for not apologizing to a white professor. Dr. Cynthia Villagomez called campus police on Leilla Marie after she declined to revise her final presentation.
@okayybriaaA ✋🏻 professor at Winston Salem State University, Had a student arrested this morning for not apologizing to her after she raised her voice at her in response to the professor for raising her voice first. The ✋🏻 cop is also just as problematic because he threatens to arrest students on numerous occasions. There needs to be justice for Leila right now and I will not stop until the professor and the Officer are fired.♬ original sound – Okayybriaa
Videos have surfaced showing Leilla Marie handcuffed in a classroom and being ed out by police officers.
“you’re getting me taken out in handcuffs ’cause I won’t apologize?” Marie said.
According to documents from the Forsyth County Magistrate’s Office, the 20-year-old student is facing a misdemeanor of disorderly conduct. Her court appearance is scheduled for Jan. 25, 2023 at 9 a.m. A WSSU leader tells me police followed campus, police & public safety policies.
— Louie Tran (@louie_tran) December 15, 2022
Marie was ultimately released “with bruises and a 2nd-degree misdemeanor.” She explained her side of the story detailing the stages of the argument that led to her arrest. During an Instagram live, Marie alleges Villagomez told her on short notice that her group project was incorrect and needed to be revised. The project was due to be presented on the same day.
Marie decided not to redo her final assignment and still came to class wanting to present with her group, and Villagomez told her it would “greatly impact your grade.”
How WSSU students feel about Cynthia Villagomez pic.twitter.com/L0t3HeQsor
— 👩🏽❤️💋👩🏽Good Good Judy👩🏽❤️💋👩🏽 (@GoodGoodJudy_) December 15, 2022
According to NewsOne, Marie alleges the two began yelling at each other before the professor told Marie to leave the class. Marie refused to leave the class. Villagomez reported the incident to another professor which led to the on-campus police being called.
Marie explained since she and the professor both refused to apologize to each other, the white campus police officer instructed a Black officer to arrest Marie. She alleges the Black officer was “doing his best not to arrest” her, but she was placed in handcuffs when a white officer arrived.
Marie takes accountability for dropping the F-bomb but feels she was not guilty of anything else. She was arrested for an equivalent resisting arrest charge known as an RDO.
#NEW: Leaders of Winston-Salem State University released a statement following an incident involving police that happened inside Carolina Hall Wednesday morning. It reads in part:
I’ll have a full report on @WXII at 11 p.m. pic.twitter.com/rihFTirmdU
— Louie Tran (@louie_tran) December 14, 2022
According to WXII 12, a lengthy statement from the HBCU was released acknowledging they are aware of the incident. It also supports the police in trying to defuse the incident by campus regulations. The statement also reports an investigation will take place following Marie’s allegations.
I asked a spokesperson for WSSU on what led to the 20-year-old student’s arrest. pic.twitter.com/sspjvD9ylh
— Louie Tran (@louie_tran) December 15, 2022
“As many of you know, there was an incident this morning involving a student and a faculty member that has escalated on social media. We now have more information regarding the event and want to share some key information with our campus community,” the statement explained.
“Regarding the incident, the university has a process we must follow when there is a reported disturbance anywhere on campus. We received a report that there was a significant commotion in Carolina Hall this morning. As such, a WSSU employee nearby called for the assistance of law enforcement after they tried to de-escalate the situation,” the statement continued.
“We understand that the weaponization of police is a prevalent problem in our community; however, that is not what happened in this incident. We strive for a safe, inclusive, thriving, and intellectual community where all our faculty, staff, and students feel respected and supported. To that end, we will take swift and appropriate measures against any situation that contradicts those ideals,” the statement concluded. “We know this situation has caused a great deal of trauma to those involved and our campus community at large, but please know that every available resource is being extended to bring a resolution,” the statement reads.
— WSSU (@WSSURAMS) December 14, 2022
Marie has decided not to return or continue her studies with the HBCU.
“I will no longer be representing WSSU,” Marie said on her Instagram live. “I can say that with a whole lot of confidence that I don’t feel like WSSU deserves my representation.”
“Y’all had me arrested for not apologizing to a white professor,” she said. “I came here for a really different experience from the one I got, and really 100% thought I would have gotten arrested at a PWI before getting arrested at my HBCU.”
Marie is scheduled to appear in court on Jan. 25.