LAS VEGAS — Melvyn Sprowson, a former Las Vegas Kindergarten teacher, was arrested after a 16-year-old runaway girl from Henderson was found voluntarily living with him.
At a preliminary hearing on Dec. 30 both the 16-year-old and her mother testified offering conflicting versions of events.
The case is interesting because the girl legally is able to consent and, more importantly, she was with Sprowson voluntarily, yet the charges keep piling up against Sprowson.
Sprowson was a teacher in California before he came to Las Vegas and it was recently revealed that Sprowson was accused of inappropriately touching students yet no charges were brought against him.
He was sued by the parents of one of the students and the Los Angeles Unified School District settled the matter out of court and did not disclose the information to the CCSD.
The 16-year old girl who appeared to already have had a fractured relationship with her mother was classified as a runaway after he mother woke up one morning in late August and found her daughter gone.
Her mother said that she immediately reported her daughter’s Aug. 29 disappearance and, according to the Facebook page that was created to help locate her daughter, the page was created on Sept. 3.
Missing persons flyers also indicated that the family thought she may have traveled to California because she has ties there.
The mother testified that her daughter was a straight A student and that her daughter has not been the same since her return, however, her testimony seems to only reflect part of the story.
The 16-year-old girl was not a sheltered person who was inexperienced with men. She had already dated older men and, while she was living in the family home with her mother she had already spent two nights at Sprowson’s home prior to running away.
She was maintaining a secret relationship with Sprowson, was wearing a ring on a chain around her neck that he gave her and repeatedly lied to her mother.
She also was the one who placed the advertisement on craigslist and readily admitted on the stand that was not forced in any way, which is essentially what she said when she was found at Sprowson’s home.
Even after she was reunited with her family she had continued to express her deep feelings for Sprowson and is undergoing intensive counseling.
It is unknown why her mother testified that she thought he daughter had fallen victim to human trafficking.
Sprowson likely honed in on the troubled, yet experienced, 16-year-old and the past allegations against him are troubling, however, it appears that the charges that continue to be thrown against him are simply a roundabout way of ensuring that he is prosecuted for something and does not teach again.
He has already been fired from his teaching job in Las Vegas.
The purpose of the preliminary hearing was to determine if there is enough evidence to go to trial.
Sprowson faces seven felony charges and two misdemeanor charges in connection with his relationship with the 16-year-old girl including first degree kidnapping, child abuse and neglect, using a minor 14 years of age or older to produce prom, contributing to the delinquency of a minor and providing a false statement to a public officer.
He remains incarcerated at the CCDC and a status check is scheduled for Jan. 6, 2014.