Former teacher charged with battery, intimidation after incident at Muncie middle school

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MUNCIE, Ind. – A Muncie teacher is accused of pushing and threatening a student at Northside Middle School earlier this year.

According to court documents, Eric Bowman, 53, faces two counts of battery and a count of intimidation.

The incident happened on February 19, 2019. Court documents said Bowman, a music teacher, became upset with a student for playing the wrong notes during a rehearsal. A 13-year-old student came to the student’s defense after noticing his classmate was crying.

Eric Bowman

That agitated Bowman, who yelled at the student, “You are the reason I am heartless,” according to court documents.

When the 13-year-old student and a classmate laughed at him, Bowman became more agitated. He ordered the student to leave the band room. After that, according to court documents, he ran toward the student and knocked over music stands before threatening to punch the 13-year-old in the face.

When the student ran off, he lost a sandal and came back to retrieve it. However, Bowman stopped him by “using his chest to push [the student] out of the band room doorway.”

The student came back to retrieve his sandal and Bowman threatened him again, court documents said.

At that point, Bowman picked up a music stand as if he “wanted to throw” it at the student. Instead, he threw it on the floor and it hit another student and a xylophone.

Around that time, a police officer who was at the school for a security meeting heard the commotion. The student asked the officer to escort him to the office; the officer “observed Bowman use a one-arm push” to force the student against some lockers.

The officer asked another instructor to escort the student to the office and ordered Bowman to go back to the band room.

While he walked away, Bowman “stated that he was going to hit” the student, court documents said. The other teacher told him he couldn’t do that.

Bowman responded, “I can and I will,” according to court documents. He was later escorted out of the building by the principal.

The school district said Bowman submitted his resignation that same day. The school also notified police of the incident. Charges against Bowman were filed this week.

Court records show Bowman was arrested and booked into jail, but has since been released on bond pending trial.

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