A former teacher at a Los Angeles elementary school will no longer have to wear a GPS monitor as he waits for his March hearing. According to an NBC Los Angeles news report, the man is one of two teachers who were arrested on allegations of child sex abuse at Miramonte Elementary School. After one teacher at the school was arrested in February of 2012 for lewd acts against 23 students, investigators carefully reviewed all allegations of abuse at the school. Within a week, a second teacher was arrested on suspicion of committing lewd acts with two children. Since the arrest, one of the accusers has recanted the accusation. The defendant claims that the touching was not sexual and his defense calls the case a “witch hunt.”
This case points out just how devastating allegations of lewd acts against a child can be to one’s career and reputation. It is common for the mere accusation of lewd behavior to result in a loss of employment, a tarnished reputation and restrictions on where you can live or work. It is common for suspects who are free on bail to have to wear a monitor to ensure that they do not go within 500 feet of a school, park or other location where children gather.
It is easy for a misunderstanding to result in serious criminal charges. It is important to consider not only what the allegations are, but also what the intentions of the defendant were at the time of the alleged incident. Under California Penal Code 288: “Any person who willfully and lewdly commits any lewd or lascivious act…upon or with the body, or any part or member thereof, of a child who is under the age of 14 years, with the intent of arousing, appealing to, or gratifying the lust, passions, or sexual desires of that person or the child” is guilty of a felony. The “intent” must be proven for the accused to be determined guilty.
The experienced Los Angeles sex crime defense attorneys at Sitkoff & Hanrahan have a long history of handling cases involving lewd acts with minors. We provide free and confidential consultations at (866) 430-8383 to anyone facing sex crime charges involving children.