Miramonte Elementary School in South L.A. is turning into a big shop of horrors.
Following this week's arrest of former teacher Mark Berndt, charged with committing lewd acts on 23 of his students, the L.A. County Sheriff's Department is confirming that a second teacher has been arrested.
That teacher ...
... was removed from class Thursday morning and is accused of "abuse," according to the Los Angeles Times.
That suspect has yet to be ID'd, and Sheriff's officials aren't yet saying what, specifically, he or she has been arrested for. But Sheriff's spokesman Steve Whitmore told the Times the investigation involved sex crimes detectives.
Meanwhile a lawyer for one of the 23 students Berndt is alleged to have abused (authorities say he bound and gagged them, fed them semen, had cockroaches crawl on their faces, and took photos) accuses the school of a cover-up.
Brian Claypool told KNX 1070 Newsradio that at least one parent was discouraged from cooperating with Sheriff's detectives.
When you consider that Berndt had been accused of trying to fondle a girl 18 years ago -- and no record of the allegation appearing to exist in school files -- you have to wonder what's going at the L.A. Unified School District.
What a scandal.
[Updated at 12:46 p.m.]: LAUSD Superintendent John Deasy told Fox 11 News this:
We are prepared to fire him next week and we'll do that at the next board meeting for inappropriate conduct and inappropriate touching [of] students ...
[Update at 2:54 p.m.]: Sheriff's officials this afternoon named the second suspect as 49-year-old Martin Bernard Springer, who they said had been under surveillance since yesterday.
He was arrested on suspicion of lewd acts upon a child. He was jailed in lieu of $2 million bail.
According to a Sheriff's statement, detectives interviewed Springer and others and say:
The allegations involve two girls who were allegedly fondled in the classroom at Miramonte school by Suspect Springer. They were approximately 7-years old at the time of the incidents, which were alleged to have occurred during the past three years.