The complex case involving a Miramonte elementary school teacher accused of committing lewd acts against children has drawn much attention from the media and concerned parents. Now, new information has revealed that the Los Angeles Unified School District was aware of complaints and allegations of inappropriate behavior against the teacher, Mark Berndt, since 1983.
For nearly three decades, LAUSD allowed the elementary school teacher to remain, without further investigating incidents. These records add another confusing layer to the case, as LAUSD previously alleged that no incidents were reported against Berndt until the late 90s, close to a decade later than the records show.
Teacher Pleads Guilty, Settlement on the Way
Berndt pleaded no contest last year to the charges, receiving 25 years in prison. Not only that, but many of the victims have taken up a civil case against LAUSD, seeking to hole the district liable for their blatant negligence and lack of action regarding incidents with Berndt. Numerous students have testified that they reported serious incidents to the school, but no action or little investigation was done.
Prior to the release of the new records, the district had agreed to pay $30 million to settle more than 50 claims brought by the victims. This number only included half of the victims who have been identified and stepped forward. Several other cases have not yet been settled, and LAUSD is seeking to have the remaining cases dismissed by October 7th. With newer records revealing the school knew about matters nearly 10 years prior to when they previously admitted, there may be more consequences for them.
The Senators (Ret.) Firm has been heavily involved in the Miramonte abuse case, providing counsel and guidance to many of the victims and their families. Our California sexual abuse attorneys are committing to obtaining the justice our clients deserve, including fair compensation. Contact us today.