Veteran teacher accused of sexually assaulting 10-year-old girl at Santa Ana elementary school


A veteran teacher was arrested this week on suspicion of sexually assaulting a 10-year-old girl at a Santa Ana elementary school, police said.

The girl alleged that Joseph Frances Deluca, 47, touched her inappropriately in a classroom at Edison Elementary School, Santa Ana police said. School officers reported the incident on Thursday to police, who arrested Deluca the same day.

Deluca, who currently works as a substitute teacher, is a resident of Irvine and was teaching at Robert Heidman Elementary School in Tustin the day of his arrest, police said.

He has taught at elementary and middle schools in Westminster, Buena Park, Santa Ana, Fountain Valley and Tustin, according to police. He has been a substitute teacher for the last two years and was previously a full-time teacher for 15 years.

Police believe there may be other victims and that anyone with information should contact Detective Jessica Taylor at 714-245-8349, jtaylor5@santa-ana.org, or Orange County Crime Stoppers at 1-855-TIP-OCCS.



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