Former Hilliard Darby teacher charged with sexual battery

Brian Tonti resigned at the end of December after 22 years at Hilliard Darby High School.

HILLIARD, Ohio — A former Hilliard Darby High School teacher who recently resigned has been charged with the sexual battery of a female student over a decade ago.

According to Franklin County Municipal Court records, 48-year-old Brian Tonti and the victim were involved in a sexual relationship during the 2010-2011 school year.

On Dec. 27, 2022, the victim went to Hilliard police to report the relationship. Aside from being a teacher, Tonti was also in charge of the theater department and the victim was heavily involved in the program.

The victim told the police that Tonti first kissed her in the classroom on Nov. 20, 2010. She remembered this date because it was her 18th birthday.

According to court records, the victim could not recall the first time they had sex but knew it was before she graduated high school.

The victim said she was a student teacher at Hilliard Darby High School and Tonti was her mentor and the relationship continued through 2013 while she was in college.

A detective noted that the victim had handwritten documents from when she was in high school and many of those had “flirtatious innuendos” and “sexual context.”

Two days after the victim went to the police, the Hilliard City School District announced that Tonti had resigned from the district after working at the high school for 22 years.

Superintendent David Stewart said the district started its own investigation last month and placed Tonti on administrative leave before requesting his resignation.

Tonti is scheduled to make a court appearance at 9 am on Wednesday.

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