Feb 22, 2023
In September, Dordulian Law Group (DLG) posted a blog detailing the troubling allegations against Richard Turner, a former athletic and physical trainer who worked at a number of area schools within the Los Angeles Unified School District, including:
Last month, a KTLA report confirmed:
“Law enforcement officials received a call of a sexual assault at Birmingham High School in the West Valley Area on September 20. Richard Turner, 64, was arrested Wednesday for 289(A)(1) PC Forcible Penetration with a Foreign Object. His case will be presented to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office for the consideration of filing charges.”
A CBS News report from October 18 further noted that detectives learned Turner was also accused of touching a different underage student at Van Nuys High School five years ago. In the time since, law enforcement authorities have learned of at least 10 victims who claim to have been abused by Turner dating back to 2017.
As CBS News reported, detectives are continuing their investigation into a “number of sexual assault allegations” made against Turner, the former LAUSD trainer who was arrested back in September for inappropriately touching a student.
At the time of Turner’s arrest, Los Angeles Police Department detectives believed additional victims assaulted by the athletic trainer had yet to be identified.
However, despite the concern over additional unidentified survivors, CBS News confirmed that Turner posted bail and was released on September 22. After investigators subsequently located additional victims, Turner was taken back into custody later that same day. His bail is currently set at $750,000, according to CBS News.
Turner now faces more than 15 sex crime counts, including:
CBS News reported on a survivor who came forward to detail Turner’s alleged abuse.
After suffering ankle, leg, and back injuries while playing volleyball, the unidentified teen described having to seek treatment from the school’s training department – specifically Richard Turner.
“The treatment for both of them consisted of massage,” she said, according to CBS News. “During those massages, he would make inappropriate comments like, ‘Your skin looks beautiful today,’ or stuff like that which got me a little bit uncomfortable.”
CBS News further reported that as the massage continued, the girl knew she “needed to get out of there – one way or another,” so she pretended to receive a phone call from her father. She acted as if he had arrived to pick her up, but Turner was unfazed, according to the CBS News report.
“He told me, ‘Give me a few more minutes, let me finish the treatment,’ which made him somehow still continue doing whatever he was doing and touch me inappropriately and after a little bit I told him, ‘I have to go, I have to go,’ and I left,” she said to CBS News.
According to CBS News, the survivor who came forward did so in an effort to speak out and help other survivors impacted by Turner feel comfortable telling their stories.
“She also hopes that by telling her story, changes will be made so the same thing doesn’t happen to anyone else,” CBS News reported.
“I feel like my school and everyone around me kind of failed me,” she said to CBS News. “In some ways I do feel betrayed and I don’t know if I will ever feel safe with another trainer or knowing that I have to get treatment, because I still have to get treatment for my ankle.”
Investigators are continuing to pursue the case against Robert Turner and are seeking additional victims who may have yet to be identified. Law enforcement officials are urging anyone with additional information related to a sex crime committed by Robert Turner to contact them immediately at 818-374-5415.
BCCHS Principal Ari Bennett issued the following statement to CBS News in response to the countless allegations of sexual assault against former trainer Robert Turner:
“Richard Turner’s alleged conduct is reprehensible and totally contrary to Birmingham Community Charter High School’s mission, values and the way we run our school. Our deepest sympathies go out to the student and student’s family who have been impacted by this. As always, our focus is on providing our students with a safe learning environment and the academic and developmental support they need to be successful students at Birmingham and beyond,” Bennett said.
“Birmingham is cooperating with law enforcement during the course of its investigation. Given privacy and other concerns we are not able to make any further comment at the present time, including about pending litigation,” he added.
Unfortunately, no straightforward litmus test exists which can help parents determine whether or not a child is being sexually abused by a teacher or coach. However, certain warning signs have been identified by various organizations, including the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC).
Firstly, it’s important to address what parents should do if a child reports an incident of sexual abuse:
“After empathizing with and supporting a child who comes forward with an allegation of sexual abuse, the next most important thing you can do is report the claim to the proper authorities. The vast majority of sex crimes sadly go unreported, and it’s important that reports are filed with law enforcement as soon as possible after a child makes an allegation. Once a report has been filed, you may proceed with a separate civil claim (in addition to any criminal charges that may be filed) in pursuit of maximum financial compensation,” Moses Castillo, Dordulian Law Group’s Chief Investigator and a retired 30-year LAPD detective, says.
Moreover, as Dordulian Law Group’s founder and former sex crimes prosecutor, Sam Dordulian, notes, how predators seek out positions of power in an effort to potentially harm children is something that all parents should realize and take seriously.
“It’s also important to remember that sexual predators are notorious for seeking out positions (whether as a professional or volunteer) that allow them access to children. Granted, 95% of coaches, teachers, clergy, volunteers at religious institutions, etc. are likely upstanding citizens. But parents need to be aware that there’s no standard model for a sexual predator. A predator can be any of age, gender, socioeconomic status, etc.,” Dordulian, says.
Here are some of the common warning signs displayed by adults that the Dordulian Law Group team has identified for parents:
Sexual assault in schools occurs far too often, impacting countless innocent young people every year. In fact, statistically, the Education Department found that:
Additional statistics provided by the National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRC) highlight the urgent need to reduce sexual violence in K-12 schools, particularly given the prevalence reported in postsecondary institutions:
Dordulian Law Group (DLG) is a full-service school sexual assault firm dedicated to helping survivors secure the justice they deserve. Led by former sex crimes prosecutor Sam Dordulian, DLG offers clients a unique brand of all-encompassing legal representation.
Through our four-tiered SAJE Team (Sexual Assault Justice Experts), clients have 24/7 access to a dedicated support network in addition to the very best legal representation available:
At DLG, we are fully committed to supporting every single school sexual assault survivor throughout the litigation process while fighting to get due justice for each and every crime. And our results speak for themselves, with outstanding reviews and a number of recent multi-million dollar victories, including:
If you’ve been victimized by a sexual predator at school, DLG’s SAJE Team is here to help. We’ll fight aggressively on your behalf to ensure that the perpetrator is held accountable and you secure justice.
Ready to file a claim and pursue justice through a financial damages award? Our expert attorneys are available online or by phone now.
Contact us today at 818-322-4056 for a free, confidential, and obligation free consultation with one of our dedicated school sexual assault lawyers. We are available 24/7 to answer any questions you may have about the litigation process (including how long it may take to reach a settlement and how much your overall claim may be worth).
DLG’s No Win/No Fee Guarantee means we never charge a penny upfront. You pay nothing for our expert legal services until after we’ve successfully recovered a maximum financial damages award for your school sexual assault case.
Our law firm in Glendale, CA advocates for victims of sexual assault, injury, employment disputes, and personal injury concerns.