Southern California -- this just in

« Previous Post | L.A. NOW Home | Next Post »

Miramonte teacher seeks release from jail after posting bond [Updated]

February 9, 2012 |  7:56 pm
Martin Springer

A Miramonte Elementary School teacher accused of fondling a student was seeking released from jail Thursday night after posting bond.

[Updated at 8:25 p.m.: The Sheriff's Department said Springer has not yet been released. In a statement, the department said release information "was posted in error on the Inmate information center. Suspect Springer did not bond out of jail. It is correct that he is attempting to make bond, but he has not bonded out and he does remain in the Los Angeles County jail."]

Martin Bernard Springer, 49, has pleaded not guilty to the charges.

PHOTOS: Parent uproar over sex-abuse claims

A judge on Tuesday set bond at $300,000 and directed that Springer wear an ankle monitoring device if released. He must also stay 100 yards from the alleged victim and witnesses, and 250 feet from schools and parks, and may not be in the company of minors without a supervising adult.

Springer was charged with three counts of committing lewd acts. He was arrested Friday after two students at the school accused him of fondling them.

But the charges filed Tuesday only involve one  girl. A source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the case was ongoing, said one of two alleged victims had changed her story in the last few days.

FULL COVERAGE: Miramonte sex-abuse investigation

Springer, of Alhambra, faces a maximum sentence of 12 years in prison, district attorney's spokeswoman Sandi Gibbons said.

Springer's arrest came as the elementary school in the unincorporated Florence-Firestone neighborhood of South Los Angeles was still reeling from the arrest of former teacher Mark Berndt, 61.

Prosecutors allege that Berndt spoon-fed his semen to blindfolded children as part of what he called a "tasting game." Police have collected hundreds of disturbing photos; in some, children are shown with a milky substance around their mouths.

Berndt was charged with 23 felony counts and was being held on $23-million bail.


School sex abuse scandal: Removal of all teachers protested

'Culture of silence' probed at school rocked by abuse scandal

Love letter allegedly from teacher's aide: Boy gave her 'chills'

-- Richard Winton and Andrew Blankstein

 Photo: Martin Springer. Credit: Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department