People in an Alhambra neighborhood responded to the arrest of a man who sheriff’s deputies believe committed lewd acts against children at Miramonte Elementary School in South Los Angeles, describing him as a loner.
Teacher Martin Springer, 49, is the second teacher from the school arrested on suspicion of lewd acts. He’s in custody on $2 million bail.
Springer lives in the second, tan house near the intersection of Geranio and Glendon streets.
No one answered the door.
Gabriel Urrutia, 40, who works for a brokerage firm, lives a couple houses down. He says Springer was a childhood friend.
“Played ball with him and stuff like that," Urrutia said, but "I haven’t really seen him in a lot of years until he moved back over here, and then occasionally we’d just give a head nod, like 'what’s up' and 'hello,' and that was it.”
One woman, who gave her first name as “Mae,” watched from her porch across the street. Her 8-year-old son stood nearby. She talked about how she felt.
“Scared... Especially, I have kids... I can’t believe it because he’s a teacher, right. He’s a teacher, right?”
One retired homeowner, who lives a block over, preferred only to give his first name — “George.” He and his girlfriend walk their dogs past Springer’s home everyday.
George says many of the neighbors, including Springer, keep to themselves in this well-to-do area.
“It’s too, too quiet," George said. "This is the way it is Saturdays and Sundays.”
When asked if he was surprised, George said “Very surprised. When I seen the news right now I said I’m going to drive over there and see what’s going on. Like I said, I never see that man.”
Some neighbors say they believe Springer lives in the house alone.