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Washington ‘Teacher of the Year’ accused of raping student during years-long relationship

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Posted at 2:07 PM, Feb 06, 2015
and last updated 2015-02-06 14:07:02-05

HIGHLINE, Wash. — An elementary school teacher in Washington state faces child rape charges after she was accused of having a years-long sexual relationship with a former student she had taken into her home.

“Any time we allegations like this, we take them very seriously,” said Catherine Carbone Rogers of the Highline School District.

Rogers said sixth-grade teacher Darcy Smith was placed on leave in August when King County’s investigation began.

A letter was sent to current parents telling them of the investigation and asking for any tips. They’re also reaching out to classmates of the teen boy all those years ago.

In the charges filed this week, the victim was named as a former student who moved in with Smith when he was 12 and lived with her family until he was 18. No one else has come forward yet.

“We’re currently conducting our own investigation to see if there’s anything there we need to know,” Rogers said.

Charging documents say Smith took the boy in after he was injured and his mother let the boy stay at the home because it was closer to the hospital and he could get away from a tough family life.

When he was 14, prosecutors say Smith would become sexual with the teen after her husband and children went to bed. She also allegedly admitted she would “be in big trouble” if anyone found out.

Eventually, the boy moved out of the home.

Smith has no discipline problems on her record and has become one of the most respected teachers, winning multiple awards and even being named the best teacher in the county in 2012.

Yet after months of investigation and years of alleged crimes, a promising career might be over.

Smith is charged with three counts of third-degree child rape. She has not yet entered a plea. She has a court appearance next week.