Miramonte Lawsuit Claims a Victim Was Transferred From Class of One Alleged Molester to That of Another After Dad Complained
One of two lawsuits filed in the wake of the Miramonte Elementary School sex abuse scandal alleges one girl was victimized by suspect Mark Berndt and then transferred to the classroom of Martin Springer, who then allegedly touched her inappropriately.
In fact, according to the suit, the school's resolution following her father's complaints about inappropriate photos allegedly taken by Berndt was to move his daughter to the care of Springer, who was charged this week with three counts of lewd acts on a child.
Berndt, as you know ...
... is the ex-Miramonte teacher whose case set off the scandal at the Florence-Firestone school. He has been charged with 23 counts of lewd acts on children.
Springer was arrested last week on suspicion of lewd acts on two children, but the District Attorney's filing this week only mentions one victim and three counts:
Fox 11 News last night stated that one of the children in the case either changed her story or gave an account that did not add up.
It's not clear if the civil suit refers to that student or the alleged victim in Springer's criminal case.
According to City News Service's account of the suit:
In 2008, the father of a female student complained to [Miramonte Principal Martin] Sandoval about inappropriate photos Berndt took of her and other students, the suit states, but Sandoval said the pictures "might be part of a class project'' and dismissed the father's concerns.
The girl was transferred to Springer's class, where she was subsequently "inappropriately touched'' by him on the leg and thigh, the suit states.
It was one of two suits filed against the L.A. Unified School District, Berndt, Springer and Miramonte Principal Sandoval on behalf of three female students for alleged intentional infliction of emotional distress, negligence, sexual battery and assault.
The complaints were both filed by attorney Gregory Owen.
One of the suits' allegations is that Berndt made a CD for one of the pupils.
The claims also allege that the district knew two students had complained in the 1990s that Berndt had been seen masturbating behind his desk but reacted by telling the kids not to make up stories.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss LA Weekly's biggest stories.
- Kabbalah Centre and Its Former Rabbi to the Stars to Pay $177,500 in Sexual Battery Suit
Fri., Nov. 27, 7:30pm
Sat., Nov. 28, 12:00am
Sat., Nov. 28, 7:30pm
Sun., Nov. 29, 11:30am
- Bicycle Is Returned to Child, but Alleged Bully Bike Thief Is Still On the Loose
- Thanksgiving Travelers Will Enjoy Lowest Gas Prices Since Early 2009