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Former Harford middle school teacher charged with soliciting sex from student

A former Harford County Public Schools teacher was arrested Tuesday and charged with soliciting sex from one of his underage students, the Harford County Child Advocacy Center said Wednesday.

Jaron Anthonee Darden, 25, of Aberdeen, is charged with soliciting prostitution, sexual solicitation of a minor and three counts of human trafficking, according to online court records.

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Darden worked at Edgewood Middle School when he allegedly took a photo of a student’s body part at his residence and uploaded it to a “fetish social media account” that he ran, according to a news release from the advocacy center. He later paid the student to perform a sex act on him, which the student did not do, the release states. Instead, the student contacted the Harford County Sheriff’s Office.

According to online court records, the alleged incidents occurred between April 1 and Sept. 1, 2019.

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Harford County Public Schools spokesperson Jillian Lader said Darden taught vocal music at the middle school. He was hired Aug. 24, 2017, and placed on paid leave on Aug. 22, 2019, she said. On Sept. 25, 2019, he was placed on unpaid leave and then terminated the same day.

“There is a communication scheduled to go to the families at Edgewood Middle School to make them aware,” Lader wrote in an email.

Darden was released on $5,000 bond from the Harford County Detention Center after an initial appearance with a district court commissioner, according to the release.

Electronic court records did not list an attorney representing Darden. He is scheduled for a preliminary hearing in Harford County District Court on July 22.

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