Boyle Heights Teacher Charged With Sexually Assaulting 6 Girls

Home  »  Sex Crimes   »   Sunrise Elementary Teacher Charged With Sexually Assaulting 6 Girls

Sunrise Elementary Teacher Charged With Sexually Assaulting 6 Girls

Sunrise Elementary Teacher Charged With Sexually Assaulting 6 Girls

Jul 13, 2023

An East Los Angeles first-grade teacher has been charged with sexually assaulting six girls at the elementary school where he works, according to the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD).

Teacher Martin Reyes, Jr., 29, a resident of Northeast Los Angeles, faces 10 counts of lewd acts upon a child under the age of 14, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office confirmed via press release. Reyes is alleged to have sexually abused six female students at Sunrise Elementary School in Boyle Heights. The alleged assaults would take place in his classroom during recess, according to KTLA. All of the victims were students enrolled in Reyes’ class.

The alleged sex crimes were reported to investigators by the family of a female student on May 22. LAPD investigators subsequently identified five additional girl students with similar allegations, according to the Los Angeles Times. Reyes was arrested Monday, LAPD officials confirmed.

L.A. District Attorney George Gascón issued the following statement:

“Our educators are entrusted with creating a safe and nurturing environment where students can learn and grow without the fear of abuse or exploitation. It is our collective responsibility to ensure that schools are places where all students can thrive, free from the threat of sexual violence… I encourage any victim of childhood sexual assault to contact our Bureau of Victim Services to receive trauma-informed care.”

The L.A. Times contacted the Los Angeles Unified School District for comment, but a spokesperson stated that the “district could not disclose information about student and personnel matters” and cited confidentiality concerns.

The Los Angeles Unified spokesperson did note to the Times that the following message had been sent earlier this year to the school community from district officials:

“In late May, the school community shared their concerns about this employee with the school. Upon receiving these concerns, we immediately contacted the Los Angeles Police Department and removed the employee off-campus pending the results of an investigation.”

The message also noted that student safety “continues to be our utmost priority.”

“Students and the greater school community are always encouraged to share any and all concerns with their school or with local authorities,” the Los Angeles Unified School District’s message added.

Reyes is currently being held at Men’s Central Jail in lieu of $1 million bail. The alleged sexual predator teacher from Sunrise Elementary School is next scheduled to appear in court on September 27.

Spotting signs of School Sexual Abuse Under California Law?

LAPD detectives have indicated they believe Reyes is responsible for additional, unreported sexual assaults involving underage students. They released his booking photo and are asking the public to come forward with any tips:

Teacher Martin Reyes Jr., 29, a resident of Northeast Los Angeles, faces 10 counts of lewd acts upon a child under the age of 14
If you have information related to a sex crime committed by teacher Martin Reyes, Jr., detectives urge you to contact the LAPD’s Juvenile Division investigator:

  • Detective Morales
  • 213-486-0598

During non-business hours or on weekends, calls should be directed to 1-877-LAPD-24-7 (877-527-3247). Anonymous tips can be sent to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (800-222-8477) or go directly to

Los Angeles-area Schools Settle Multi-Million Dollar Sexual Abuse Lawsuits

Los Angeles Unified School District is one of many in California with histories of alleged sexual abuse incidents involving teachers and staff. In fact, a number of area schools have recently settled major lawsuits which awarded damages to the survivors:

  • A $102.5 million damages award was issued in March 2022 following a jury trial to two women who sued a Northern California school district. The complaint alleged that officials failed to stop a middle school teacher from sexually grooming and abusing them as minors.
  • A San Jose school was ordered to pay $7.5 million to five men who were sexually abused by their elementary school teacher in the late 1970s and early ’80s.
  • Survivors of a former Sun Valley high school wrestling coach were awarded a $52 million settlement in October 2022. The complaint alleged that the Los Angeles Unified School District knew of prior sexual misconduct and did nothing about it.
  • In April 2022, a $13.7 million settlement was reached with the Riverside Unified School District after 10 students alleged sexual abuse by former school technology aide Fernando Figueroa. The survivors ranged between the ages of 7 and 11 at the time of the abuse.
  • An $11 million school sex abuse settlement was reached between Redlands Unified School District and seven survivors. The plaintiffs, initially named in four separate lawsuits, accused a former Clement Middle School teacher, Sean Ramiro Lopez, of various sex crimes (Lopez is currently serving a 74-year prison sentence for sexual abuse).

Additionally, Redlands Unified School District has been plagued by sexual abuse scandals in recent years – many of which resulted in major settlements with survivors. The district has paid out over $41 million in civil damages, and a report from CBS News noted that may of the predator teachers were moved from school to school as a result of oversight failures.

More U.S. Schools Paying for Child Sex Abuse Scandals

Earlier this year, a troubling report from Education Week revealed that countless school districts across the United States were forced to pay out major damages awards and settlements of $1 million or more in 2022 for lawsuits related to sexual misconduct, crimes, and discrimination.

United Educators, an insurance and risk management company focused on schools and colleges, collected data via a study. Education Week referenced the data in its article and confirmed that many of the major school abuse settlements are linked to crimes dating back decades.

According to the study:

  • 69 publicly reported damages awards and settlements of $1 million or more among K-12 schools and colleges were recorded in 2022.
  • That figure – the total number of damages awards and settlements – was up from 38 which equaled $1 million or more in 2021.

Damages in school sex abuse civil lawsuits are intended to help survivors receive justice through financial compensation for past harm.

Filing a California School Abuse Lawsuit for Damages

If a child is abused by a teacher, coach, or school staff member, a civil claim may be brought to hold the individual perpetrator as well as the school and/or district accountable.

Some of the damages that may be included this type of claim include:

  • Emotional trauma
  • Reduced quality of life
  • Pain and suffering
  • Punitive damages
  • Psychological care or therapy expenses (past and future)
  • Medical care costs
  • Reduced future wages or earning capacity

Our Sexual Assault Justice Experts are here to help survivors secure justice. Contact our top-rated attorneys online or by phone for a free consultation today.

To speak with an attorney about filing a claim, contact Dordulian Law Group (DLG) today at 866-GO-SEE-SAM. DLG is a full-service sexual abuse firm representing survivors of all ages. We are led by former sex crimes prosecutor and Deputy District Attorney for Los Angeles County, Sam Dordulian. Together with his team of proven and dedicated sexual violence lawyers, Dordulian fights aggressively for justice on behalf of all survivors.

Contact us today at 866-GO-SEE-SAM for a free and confidential consultation.

Go See Sam