Quince Orchard Teacher Charged in Traffic Death
Quince Orchard High School English teacher and theater director Nicholas Saadipour was arrested by the North Carolina Highway Patrol on Nov. 22. He was charged with a variety
of offenses, the most serious being felony death by motor vehicle.
North Carolina authorities said that Saadipour was driving on Interstate Route 95 in Northampton County when his auto swerved to the side of the highway and hit a guardrail. When he attempted to drive back into the flow of traffic, a car that was approaching from the rear had to swerve to avoid Saadipour’s car; that driver lost control of the car and it overturned. The driver, a woman from New York, was killed.
The North Carolina Highway Patrol investigated the wreck and determined that Saadipour was under the influence of alcohol and he was arrested. Police also charged him with reckless driving and having an open container of alcohol in the car. At the time, he was admitted to a hospital for observation.
It was not Saadipour’s first brush with an alcohol-related traffic offense. In March of 2016, Saadipour was arrested by a Montgomery County police officer on MD-355 at Grosvenor Lane and charged with driving under the influence; he later pled guilty to a lesser charge.
QO Principal Elizabeth Thomas wrote a letter to the Quince Orchard community explaining that Saadipour would be on leave until the legal matter had been resolved. Telephone calls to her office by the Courier were not returned.
MCPS spokesperson Gboyinde Onijala said that the school system would have no comment beyond what Principal Thomas had written in her letter. She declined to say whether Saadipour had self-reported his other DUI arrests.
In 2017, Saadipour was awarded a Distinguished Service Award by Montgomery County Public Schools. Saadipour was recognized for creating a more diverse, multicultural and accepting theater program at Quince Orchard High School. He had noticed the lack of diversity in the program and used time outside of school to offer workshops for students.
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