(Las Vegas, KXNT)- Former CCSD elementary school teacher Melvyn Sprowson will go to trial for his involvement with a 16 year old girl who was living with him last year. On Wednesday, Judge William Kephart ruled there was enough evidence in the case for it to be bound over to district court.
Police and the girl’s family were actively looking for the teen when she was found at Sprowson’s home where she had been staying for more than two months. When first approached by police, Sprowson denied knowing where the girl was. The two later admitted they were in a romantic relationship.
However, controversy still surrounds this case. Prosecutors argue the teen was manipulated into staying with Sprowson and was told to not contact her mother for risk of being caught by authorities. They claim Sprowson did everything he could to conceal the girl, including making her put her hair up in a baseball cap and put on sunglasses during evening drives.
Defense attorney John Momot disagrees with this claim, saying his client never forced the girl to stay at his home, nor confined her. She was there of her own free will, looking to get away from her mother.
“You have a 16 year old reaching out to leave her home and as a result, whoever assists her can find themselves in this kind of predicament,” said Momot to KXNT.
Still Judge Kephart says Sprowson’s position as a teacher holds him to a high standard, one that he did not live up to.
“He’s even a mandated reporter as a teacher so, in my opinion, the very things he was doing here…he had a requirement to report that to his supervisor,” stated Kephart.
Still there is much debate. The teen is 16, giving her the ability to legally consent to sex, but is still considered a minor. This is also not the first time the teen has been involved with an older man.
Momot says this is going to be a very interesting case to watch. His client maintains his innocence.
Sprowson faces 6 felony counts in district court including 1 count of kidnapping, 1 count of child abuse with mental harm and 4 counts of unlawful use of a minor in the production of pornography.