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Teacher Accused of Blindfolding Kids and Feeding Them His Semen Said it Was a "Tasting Game"

Photo of Mark Berndt courtesy of L.A. Sheriff's Department
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Miramonte Elementary School teacher Mark Berndt, 61, has been arrested and his highly questionable teaching methods are under scrutiny following an extensive investigation into accusations he blindfolded students and had them tasting his semen fed to them by spoon.The Los Angeles Times reports that sources close to the case say Berndt explained to the children that they were being blindfolded as part of a "tasting game" and that the eye coverings were protection. The substance, thought by investigators to be the suspect's semen, was fed to the children, and Berndt instructed them to lick it off their lips.

More from the Times:

[The students] were supposed to say whether the substance was sweet or salty and whether they liked the taste. The blindfolds were necessary, Berndt allegedly said, "because he was going to put on bright lights to take the pictures and he didn't want to hurt their eyes."

Berndt was arrested at his home in Torrance on Monday after a nearly year-long investigation that began when a film processor turned over about 40 suspicious photos. The photos allegedly depicted kids who were blindfolded and had their mouths covered with tape in a school setting. In some of the photos, Berndt was posing with the children, either with his arm around them or his hand over their mouths.

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A spoon found in the trash in Berndt's classroom was tested and determined to be semen containing Berndt's DNA.

"I hope this man spends the rest of his life in prison," said Los Angeles Unified School District Superintendent John Deasy, who says the Berndt was not permitted back in the classroom after the LAUSD learned of the accusations, and was subsequently terminated by the Board at their next meeting.

Berndt is currently charged with 23 felony counts, and is being held on $2.3 million bail.