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Highline Schools Elementary Teacher charged with raping 14-year old boy

Darcy Smith regional [1]

Darcy Smith, center, when she was named “Teacher of the Year” in 2012. Also pictured is Deputy Superintendent Carla Jackson, left, and Interim Superintendent Alan Spicciati, right. Photo courtesy Highline Public Schools.

by Jack Mayne [2]

A woman who just three years ago was named regional “Teacher of the Year” (read our original report here [3]) has been charged with child rape of a teenage boy that she had taken in to live with her in her Renton home.

Darcy M. Smith, 41, recently a teacher at McMicken Heights Elementary School is charged with abusing a boy for more than two years after first having sex with him at age 14. The youth is now 19 and reportedly moved out of the woman’s home when he was 18.

The Highline Public Schools elementary school teacher was named teacher of the year for the region in 2012. Smith is now accused of abusing a boy for more than two years. Highline Public Schools spokeswoman Catherine Carbone Rogers said parents of children taught by Smith were notified of the investigation earlier in the week.

The boy told investigators Smith, 41, first had sex with him when he was 14 and living in her Renton home. He’s now 19.

Smith, most recently of McMicken Heights Elementary School, has been charged with three counts of child rape in King County Superior Court. The assaults are alleged to have begun in September 2008; charging papers suggest Smith was still sexually involved with the boy when she was named teacher of the year.

Six-year involvement
The youth told sheriff’s deputies that he moved in with his sixth grade teacher, Smith, when he was 12-years old “and lived with Mrs. Smith for about a year before they began having sex.” The boy said they continued to have sex until he moved out when he was 18.

The investigating deputy said the boy said “Smith would pull him aside in the sixth grade and talk to him about his family problems. He said he felt like he could talk to Ms. Smith about things he could not tell his mother.” The youth said he broke his collarbone and Smith took him to the hospital.

The deputy reported that the youth’s mother and Smith agreed to allow the boy to live with her because “she lived closer to the hospital and spoke English. He also said that his older brother was involved with gangs and was a bad influence.”

The police report said the boy related that when he first lived with her, she “bought him a few things and soon he had his closet full of clothes. (The boy) said he never had new clothes before.”

The mother agreed to keep allowing the boy to live with Smith, said the Sheriff’s deputy’s report, “because she would put him on the right track.”

The officer’s report said later on in the relationship, Smith’s husband would fall asleep early and she would put her own children to bed, then she would drink wine and become more affectionate with the youth.

They started having sex with the youth when he was in the eighth grade.

The deputy’s report said the boy “knew it was wrong.”

Smith told the youth “not to say anything and made him promise not to tell.” The report added that Smith told the teen that “she would go to jail and be in big trouble if he told.”

Administrative Leave
Smith has been on administrative leave since August, when the district learned of the claims, Carbone Rogers told the Seattle P.I. blog. She has been with the district since 2001.

Smith was widely known for her work with students at McMicken, especially those with challenging backgrounds, the P.I. reported. In an essay published in an Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction collection, Smith opined that teachers are required “not merely to enrich the lives of our students academically.”

“We have a much greater responsibility to the children we teach,” Smith wrote in 2013. “We do not always know what role we are fulfilling for a child at any given moment, but it is important to remember that we have a moral obligation to fill these roles when we can.”

Smith has not been jailed and is scheduled to be arraigned on Feb. 12 at the Norm Maleng Regional Justice Center in Kent.

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