High School Teacher Arrested for Kidnapping 3 Students

Arroyo Pacific Academy teacher teacher pulled knife on students.

LOS ANGELES – Arroyo Pacific Academy teacher John Edward Maust, 34, turned himself on Sunday and was arrested on suspicion of kidnapping and other charges.

The arrest was prompted by an incident that occurred Saturday night in Altadena. Three students driving in the area spotted Maust, who asked them for a ride, reports the Los Angeles Times. After he got into the car, one of the students became concerned about the conversation they were having with the teacher, who appeared to be drunk.

The three students then exited the car, but Maust ordered them back into the car, insisting they go to Jack-in-the-Box, reports the Associated Press. He then pulled a knife on them.

In response to the arrest, Arroyo Pacific Academy Philip Clarke issued the following online letter:

We are immensely saddened by the story we have heard.  We have been in contact with the parents of one of our students involved and are assured of his safety.

Mr. Maust has been a long-term, well-respected member of our faculty.  Our hearts and prayers go to him and his family as he deals with this situation in his life.

We contacted Mr. Maust and advised him that he is on indefinite administrative leave.  He has reported to the sheriff’s station in Altadena and the investigation will be ongoing.  We have no comment to make on the investigation.

However, our primary concern is the safety and wellbeing of our students.  We will be meeting with all our summer school students this morning, and we will be informing the parents of all our current students of the situation today.

Please respect the privacy of our students.

Maust was booked on suspicion of kidnapping, false imprisonment, and criminal threats, and is being held on $100,000 bail.

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About the Author

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Robin has been covering the security and campus law enforcement industries since 1998 and is a specialist in school, university and hospital security, public safety and emergency management, as well as emerging technologies and systems integration. She joined CS in 2005 and has authored award-winning editorial on campus law enforcement and security funding, officer recruitment and retention, access control, IP video, network integration, event management, crime trends, the Clery Act, Title IX compliance, sexual assault, dating abuse, emergency communications, incident management software and more. Robin has been featured on national and local media outlets and was formerly associate editor for the trade publication Security Sales & Integration. She obtained her undergraduate degree in history from California State University, Long Beach.

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