Ongoing coverage of child abuse in schools

La Mirada Substitute Teacher Arrested on Suspicion of Child Molestation

A court appearance for Ted Nishihara was scheduled for Wednesday

By Samantha Tata
|  Tuesday, Mar 13, 2012  |  Updated 1:48 PM PDT
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Ted Nishihara was arrested on suspicion of committing lewd acts upon a child while substitute teaching at a La Mirada middle school, sheriff's deputies said.

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A 29-year-old substitute teacher in La Mirada was arrested Monday on suspicion of sexually molesting a student at Los Coyotes Middle School, according to Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department officials.

The mother of a female student at Los Coyotes Middle School said her daughter told her a male substitute teacher, identified by authorities as Ted Nishihara, touched her in a sexual manner during class, police said.

The alleged molestation occurred Thursday, according to district officials.A female student made a report to a guidance counselor, who contacted school administrators, according to Norwalk-La Mirada Superintendent Ruth Perez.

Other students told school officials they were uncomfortable with the way Nishihara looked at them, Perez said.

The girl's mother reported the allegations to the sheriff's department Friday, according to authorities.

Detectives interviewed students and staff at the school Monday before speaking with the suspect, police said. After an interview with Nishihara, detectives arrested him at his home for lewd acts upon a child.

"He was teaching in several different school districts as a substitute teacher, so we are contacting all of those school districts to see if there are any complaints against him," said Sgt. Dan Scott, of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department Special Victim's Bureau.

He is being held on $100,000 bail. A court appearance was scheduled for Wednesday, according to jail records.

Nishihara has been working for the Norwalk-La Mirada School District for about five years.

The arrest is the latest in a series of investigations involving sexual misconduct in Los Angeles-area schools.

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