Enrique Ramos, 45, pleaded not guilty to three counts of lewd acts on a child.
He was a man parents trusted with their children. He and his wife operated a licensed daycare facility, Cano & Ramos Family Child Care.
The state issued a temporary suspension order, saying there was an immediate risk to children at the Pennsylvania Avenue facility. The move worries residents like Alberto Arcos, whose younger brothers spent time there.
"We've checked the website for sexual predators around our area, and he never came up," Arcos said. "Hearing this now is kind of confusing and shocking."
LAPD investigators suspect more children may have been victimized. They received a complaint earlier this month from a 5-year-old girl. A records check of the same address found there had been two previous complaints in 2008 and in 2009. But in the first investigation, the victim's mother was homeless and could not be located. In the second case, there was insufficient evidence to stop the daycare center.
For that reason, the Cano Ramos daycare was allowed to continue operation. It has been licensed since 2002. Fourteen children are currently enrolled. Ramos' wife is not accused.
Authorities say letters are going out to all the parents of children who had been enrolled in the past.
Ramos is being held on $1.3 million. Anyone with information is urged to call (877) LAPD-24-7.