A former Lucia Mar Unified School District bus driver will serve 16 years in prison for sexually abusing a special-needs 9-year-old girl after agreeing to a plea deal with prosecutors. [Tribune]
David Kenneth Lamb, 50, abused the girl, now 12, repeatedly while she was riding on his school bus. The abuse, which occurred between January and May 2017, consisted of Lamb showing the girl pornography on his phone, touching her vagina and exposing his penis to her and making her touch it, according to court testimony.
On Monday, Lamb pleaded no contest to two felony charges of committing lewd acts on a child. In exchange, prosecutors dropped charges of sexual penetration of a child and sharing harmful material with intent to seduce a minor.
The plea deal will require Lamb to register for life as a sex offender. He could also face a fine of up to $10,000 and about 20 years of parole supervision upon release from prison. Likewise, Lamb will have to pay an undetermined amount of restitution to the girl.
Sentencing in the case is scheduled for April 24. Judge Matthew Guerrero must still approve the terms of the plea deal for the agreement to take effect.
Lamb’s case is also playing out in civil court. The victim’s family is suing Lamb, as well as Lucia Mar and San Luis Obispo County.
According to the lawsuit, at least one of the incidents of abuse was caught on the school bus’s security camera. After the girl’s parents informed the school of the alleged abuse, a transportation manager said he reviewed the tapes and found no inappropriate behavior.
Additionally, court testimony indicated, after the parents reported the abuse, school officials determined the girl was lying, and Lamb continued abusing the victim.
Following Lamb’s plea on Monday, David Ring, the family’s attorney, said he is relieved the girl does not have to testify at trial. But, Ring said he is disappointed by the sentence and that Lamb should have received 50 years in prison.