Sonoma Valley High teacher arrested on suspicion of sex crime

Longtime Sonoma Valley High School history teacher Darian Tucker, 45.

Longtime Sonoma Valley High School history teacher Darian Tucker, 45, was arrested Jan. 25 on a felony charge of meeting a minor for lewd contact. He was booked into the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office Main Adult Facility and released on $50,000 bail later that night.

Sheriff’s Office Domestic Violence/Sexual Assault Detectives have been investigating Tucker’s conduct for the past 10 days. A deputy with Sonoma Police Department was dispatched to Sonoma Valley High School on Jan. 14 for a report of child molestation. The deputy learned a male teacher had a sexually inappropriate relationship with a female student.

Detectives gathered and analyzed evidence, including sexually inappropriate emails, according to a statement issued by the Sonoma Police Department on Jan. 26. The relationship lasted approximately three months. The suspect and victim did not meet in person.

Police Chief Orlando Rodriguez said that he is sharing Tucker’s booking photo because the police believe he may have victimized other girls or young women.

The department is asking for other possible victims, or community members who may know of other victims, to step forward. They can call Detective Dan Avina at 565-8290.

According to a spokesperson for Sonoma County Domestic Violence/Sexual Assault Unit reached via email on Thursday afternoon,, the investigating officer has received multiple calls” about Tucker since the news broke on Tuesday “and is following up on all leads.”

The Sonoma Valley Unified School District issued a statement earlier in the day on Jan. 26 announcing that it had removed Tucker from his job on Jan. 14 based on “concerns the teacher failed to maintain appropriate boundaries with a student.”

A district announcement stated that Tucker was immediately barred from interacting with students upon learning of the allegations, and that an internal investigation is underway. SVUSD also noted that it is cooperating with local law enforcement during their investigation.

Tucker had been teaching AP World History and an AVID class (Advancement Via Individual Determination) that prepares students for college eligibility.

Tucker submitted his resignation on Jan. 15, with an effective date of Jan. 31, according to the district. He is currently on paid administrative leave, however his status will change to unpaid if the Sonoma County District Attorney files a complaint in Sonoma County Superior Court alleging Tucker committed a sex offense as defined in the education code, according to the district announcement.

Tucker has taught at SVHS since 2001. The district stated that its records reflect that his background and reference checks were properly conducted at the time of his hire.

He is currently a resident of Santa Rosa.

“We are making arrangements to ensure student instruction is not disrupted,” the announcement said. “The protection of students is paramount, and our teachers are notified each year about appropriate behavior around students. We cannot and will not tolerate inappropriate conduct between a teacher and any student.”

SVUSD declined to comment further as law enforcement’s investigation is ongoing.

As of 12:30 p.m. on Jan. 26, both Tucker’s SVHS teacher page and his Linked In profile were taken down.

Email Lorna Sheridan at lorna.sheridan@sonomanews.com.

For more photos and interactive content, read this story on the Sonoma Index-Tribune website

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