Originally Published Mar. 28, 2013 10:44am on theblaze.com
By Victor Skinner
LOS ANGELES – For years, parents at George de la Torre Elementary School in Wilmington, California complained to school administrators about teacher Robert Pimentel's questionable behavior with their children.
And for years school officials ignored their concerns and shielded Pimentel, a police investigation concluded. It wasn't until five parents of students in Pimentel's fourth-grade class went directly to police with their accusations in March 2012 that the Los Angeles Unified School District took action.
"These were some really alert parents knowing their kids and noticing subtle changes in their personalities," Los Angeles police Capt. Fabian Lizarraga told the Associated Press.
Several young girls told police Pimentel fondled them on top of and underneath their clothing. Their claims were substantiated by other students, and authorities eventually discovered that 20 of the teacher's female students – plus a female teacher – had been victimized over the years.
Investigators also learned about similar molestation complaints lodged against Pimentel in 2008 and 2008, both of which were handled by a principal who swept them under the rug, the AP reported.
In January, Pimentel pleaded not guilty to eight felony counts of sexual abuse and seven counts of lewd acts on a child, according to KABC-TV in Los Angeles.
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