PALO ALTO — A 35-year-old private school music teacher suspected of committing sex crimes against a 15-year-old girl was arrested last week, according to police.
John Patrick Root of San Francisco, was arrested July 20 and booked into Santa Clara County jail on four felony counts of lewd and lascivious conduct with a minor, according to Palo Alto police.
Officials with the School of Rock, which has four locations in the Bay Area, could not immediately be reached for comment.
The investigation began on July 13, when Palo Alto police were notified by another law enforcement agency of allegations against a music teacher named John Root, according to Lt. James Reifschneider. That agency, which was not named by Palo Alto police, learned of the allegation from someone who is required by law to report any suspected child abuse to authorities.
Palo Alto police didn’t have much to go on, other than the accusation that a teacher with the name of John Root was having an inappropriate relationship with a student, Reifschneider said.
“There was some digging required to determine if it was a true accusation, and most important, to identify the victim,” Reifschneider said.
Detectives launched an investigation and determined Root taught the girl music at the School of Rock on Middlefield Road in Palo Alto for several months. Police suspect Root of sexually abusing the girl “on several occasions” at other locations in Palo Alto.
John Patrick Root, 35, of San Francisco, was arrested on July 20, 2017 by Palo Alto police on suspicion of sex crimes against a minor.John Patrick Root, 35, of San Francisco, was arrested on July 20, 2017 by Palo Alto police on suspicion of sex crimes against a minor.
On July 20, an arrest warrant was issued for Root, who is a part-time teacher. He was arrested the next day in San Francisco.
Detectives are working with the school to investigate the possibility of other victims, police said.