BRYAN, Tex. (KBTX) - A former A&M Consolidated High School teacher has been sentenced to four years in prison for having an improper relationship with a student.
Thomas Rucker, 37, of Bryan, was handed this punishment during a hearing on Friday in the 85th District Court in Bryan.
In 2016, Rucker was teaching criminal justice at Consol when students made school administrators aware of his inappropriate behavior with students.
College Station police began investigating the relationship in September 2016 and informed school administrators. Rucker was put on leave, and the school participated in the investigation.
Detectives discovered that Rucker had engaged in a sexual relationship with a student. Further, they say he was found to have made advances toward other students.
According to the Brazos County District Attorney’s office, Rucker would message these students through texting and social media messaging systems, both during the school day and after hours.
Rucker was also found to regularly pull students out of class, as a way to get students alone, according to the DA’s press release.
Judge Kyle Hawthorne rejected Rucker’s request for bail, commenting that “it is not a thin line, but a brick wall” when it comes to student-teacher relationships.
In a statement, the prosecuting assistant district attorneys Brian Baker and Cahal McColgan said, “This defendant used his position of authority to prey on high school students. This sentence should stand as a warning to anyone that would ever consider using our schools as a dating pool.”