NewsSarasota, Manatee County


Sarasota middle school teacher arrested for inappropriately touching students, police say

Posted at 2:27 PM, Nov 18, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-18 17:50:50-05

A Sarasota middle school teacher was arrested after deputies say he inappropriately touched students.

On Sept. 6, 2019, Sarasota PD responded to Brookside Middle School for a follow-up on a case of a teacher, 34-year-old Maxwell Guss, allegedly inappropriately touching two students.

During an interview with Guss, police were notified of another student who made a complaint against him for inappropriate touching back when he was a teacher at Sarasota High School in 2017.

Guss said that year he was brought into a meeting that included the assistant principal.

In October of this year, the assistant principal was interviewed, and said she vaguely remembered a written complaint and meeting with the mother of a student, but could not find the file. The principal also could not produce the file.

The student who initially filed the complaint was brought in for an interview and described Guss as being very "creepy" and that he made all the girls in the class uncomfortable. The student was 14 years old at the time of the alleged incidents.

Police say the 2017 incident had not been reported to law enforcement previously.

He is charged with at least with at least two counts of lewd and lascivious conduct, but police think there may be more victims.

Guss was a teacher in Manatee County at Harllee Middle School and Bayshore High School and in Sarasota County at Sarasota High School and Brookside Middle School.

Anyone with information on this case is asked to call Detective Angela Cox at 941-263-6075 or leave an anonymous tip with Crime Stoppers by calling 941-366-TIPS