A teacher’s aide in Los Angeles has been arrested for allegedly sexually abusing six elementary school children. According to reports, a group of 10 and 11-year-old children realized that they’d all been touched inappropriately by their classroom aide. They brought the issue to the attention of the administration at Oxnard Street Elementary in North Hollywood.
Two weeks after the children complained, 27-year-old Lino Cabrera was arrested by the LAPD. He faces charges for continuous sexual abuse of a child and lewd or lascivious acts upon a child.
Sex Crimes Involving Children in Los Angeles
Sex crimes are among the most serious a person can commit. Those crimes are considered to be even more heinous when they involve a child. Here, an elementary school classroom aide has been accused of inappropriately touching at least six children in a sexual manner. According to the charges, it appears that Cabrera was engaged in the illicit behavior for quite a long time. He’s not only facing charges for lewd conduct with a child, but also for continuous sexual abuse of a child.
Lewd or Lascivious Acts Upon a Child
Lewd or lascivious acts upon a child, defined in Penal Code 288(a) PC, is California’s criminal child molestation law. Child molestation occurs when a person:
- Willfully and lewdly
- Commits any lewd or lascivious act
- Upon, or with the body, or any part or member thereof
- A child under the age of 14
- With the intent to arouse, appeal to, or gratify the lust, passions, or sexual desires of themselves of the child.
In other words, child molestation under Penal Code 288(a) PC involves intentionally touching a child for a sexual purpose. The point is to arouse yourself or the child.
Child molestation is a felony, punishable by up to 8 years in a California state prison.
Continuous Sexual Abuse of a Child
You only have to molest a child once to be convicted under 288(a) PC. A person can face aggravated charges for continuous sexual abuse of a child when the inappropriate touching goes on for an extended period of time. Continuous sexual abuse of a child, as defined in 288.5 PC, occurs when a person:
- Lives with a child or has recurring access to a child under the age of 14
- Engages in substantial sexual conduct with that child
- For no less than three months.
You can also be charged with continuous sexual abuse of a child if you commit three or more acts of child molestation.
What is substantial sexual conduct? California defines this as:
- Oral copulation (contact between a mouth and sexual organ)
- Masturbation of the child or perpetrator, OR
- Penetration of the child or perpetrator’s vagina or rectum.
Continuous sexual abuse of a child involves much more than improper touching. It involves active sexual behavior. In California, continuous sexual abuse of a child is a felony punishable by 6, 12, or 16 years in a California state prison.
A strong defense, led by an experienced Los Angeles criminal defense attorney, is critical when charged with a sex crime involving a child. An attorney knows how to navigate these difficult cases and achieve the best possible result for their client.
Lifetime Sex Offender Registration Required for Child Sex Crime Convictions
A person convicted of a sex crime involving a child – including child molestation or continuous sexual abuse of a child – will be required to register as a sex offender for life. Sex offenders are subject to strict rules and regulations. As a sex offender, the state can limit where you can live and what jobs you can hold. Failing to register as a sex offender or violating the state’s sex offender rules carry harsh penalties.