Some offenses occurred in Altadena, L.A.
By Howard Breuer
December 19, 2002
PASADENA -- A 59- year-old Palmdale karate instructor was sentenced Thursday to 27 years in prison for sexually assaulting two children.
Daniel Payan of Littlerock pleaded guilty Nov. 8 to 15 counts, including lewd acts with a child and rape, after a prosecutor played a secretly recorded phone conversation made in August between Payan and one of the victims, now 33. On the tape, Payan admits to some of the crimes which occurred in Altadena and Los Angeles and says there's "nothing wrong with' having sex with 12-year-old girls.
Under the plea deal, Payan could have received between 22 and 27 years. Pasadena Superior Court Judge Judson W. Morris Jr. imposed the maximum after recalling how Payan told a female victim that he was just "teaching her how to be a good wife.' "This is one of the two worst cases I've seen in 38 years,' Morris said. "There's no doubt in my mind there's other victims out there too.' Payan's defense attorney, Tyson Beers, noted that his client has no criminal record, and admitted guilt early in the proceedings. The victims quivered and cried as they confronted Payan during the emotional hearing.
"You'd give me drugs to make me relax,' recalled an adult male who had been sodomized on his 13th birthday. "I have nothing but hatred for you.' Another victim said she decided to bring Payan to justice after struggling for two decades with extreme depression. "I have no childhood, no teen years to look back on,' she said as she wept. "I tried, I don't know how many times, to kill myself over this,' she added.
Payan was co-owner of Shotokan Martial Arts, which operates on weeknights out of a multipurpose room at Lake Los Angeles Elementary School.
After Payan was arrested, the Keppel Union School District halted the classes until new owners took over, said district Business Services Director Alan Arjo. "We were concerned about protecting our kids,' said Arjo. He added that he's not aware of any complaints about Payan in the Antelope Valley.
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