CREATED May. 16, 2013
ORO VALLEY, Ariz. (KGUN9-TV) - Oro Valley police have arrested an Ironwood Ridge High School teacher for "sexual conduct with a minor." That teacher, through his attorney, told KGUN9 he denies any wrongdoing and will fight the charge.
Lt. Kara Riley told KGUN9 officers detained 30-year-old Robert Richard Brush at the northwest side high school Thursday then questioned and arrested him at a police station.
The minor involved is a female student at the school, she said.
Appearing in court by video Friday morning, the judge told Brush: “You're not allowed to have any contact with the victim in his case. You're not allowed to go to Ironwood Ridge High School.”
Brush is a marketing teacher at the school, which is part of the Amphitheater School District
Lt. Reily said her department investigated Brush in March for a possible inappropriate relationship with a student at the school. She said there wasn't enough evidence to arrest him at the time.
This week, Reily said there was new evidence of a relationship with that one female student.
“The teacher's position is a position of trust so it's very concerning to us,” she said. “We wanted to take quick action.”
The severity of the charge is upped because of Brush's role as a trusted adult, she added.
Brush’s attorney, Rafael Gallego, told KGUN9 his client is innocent, plans to fight the charge and awaits the evidence presented by county prosecutors. He added Brush's wife is standing by her husband.
The judge let Bursh out of jail after the hearing Friday. He's set to return to court in a few weeks.
Amphitheater School District declined KGUN9's request for an interview. Instead, it sent a statement, which read it part:
"In March of this year, school and district staff reported related rumors to law enforcement and placed Mr. Brush on administrative leave pending an investigation at that time. The District fully cooperated with the ensuing police investigation and also conducted its own internal investigation, but neither investigation substantiated the rumors then circulating.
"As it does with all new employees, the District conducted a thorough background check on Mr. Brush before his hire in August 2012. The District received positive references from his prior employers, and he qualified for a valid fingerprint clearance card from the Arizona Department of Public Safety. Certainly nothing in Mr. Brush’s background suggested that he was unfit to work as a teacher."
Investigators aren’t aware of any other victims.