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California

Driving instructor arrested after student reports being sexually assaulted during lessons

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Tom Lam of Montclair was arrested Friday on suspicion of sexually assaulting a minor.
(Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department )

A registered sex offender working as a driving instructor has been arrested after his 17-year-old student reported he sexually assaulted her during their driving lessons, authorities said Thursday.

Last summer, the girl’s parents paid Tom Lam, of Montclair, for six driving lessons to help their daughter get her driver’s license, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

Lam gave her the first four lessons without incident, but during the last two sessions he is accused of sexually assaulting her.

During its investigation, the sheriff’s Special Victims Bureau found that Lam is a registered sex offender and was previously arrested in November 2014 by the Monterey Park Police Department for “annoying or molesting a minor” while acting as a driver instructor.

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Deputies arrested Lam at his home March 15, and he was booked at the Walnut-Diamond Bar sheriff’s station on suspicion of sexually assaulting a minor, according to the department. On Sunday, he was released on $140,000 bond. He’s scheduled to be in court in Pomona on April 8.

Authorities said the Special Victims Bureau believes there might be additional victims and asked anyone with information to contact the bureau’s toll-free tip line at (877) 710-5273 or by email at specialvictimsbureau@lasd.org.


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