News

Former Palo Alto VA cardiology chief indicted for sexual battery

John Giacomini faces 2 years in prison, $250K fine if convicted

The former cardiology chief of the Veterans Affairs Palo Alto Health Care System who is accused of sexually abusing a doctor in 2017 made his first court appearance by telephone in San Jose on Thursday.

A federal grand jury indicted Atherton resident John Giacomini, 71, of engaging in abusive sexual contact against a subordinate doctor during work at the hospital around December 2017, according to a press release issued Thursday by the U.S. Attorney's Office. Court documents show the indictment, which remains sealed, was filed on March 12.

If Giacomini is convicted of the abusive sexual contact charge, he faces a maximum sentence of two years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Giacomini served as the chief of the Palo Alto VA's Cardiology Department for 30 years, the U.S. Attorney's Office said. He also served as a professor of cardiovascular medicine at Stanford Medical School, according to past press releases from the university. According to a report by the Palo Alto Daily Post, he was placed on leave after the school conducted an investigation based on a complaint filed against the doctor in June 2018. The university did not disclose the nature of the complaint or investigation.

Giacomini is currently released on a $200,000 bond and is being supervised by the United States Pretrial Services Office in San Jose. He is set to return to court for a status conference on July 7.

What's local journalism worth to you?

Support Almanac Online for as little as $5/month.

Learn more

Follow AlmanacNews.com and The Almanac on Twitter @almanacnews, Facebook and on Instagram @almanacnews for breaking news, local events, photos, videos and more.

Former Palo Alto VA cardiology chief indicted for sexual battery

John Giacomini faces 2 years in prison, $250K fine if convicted

by / Palo Alto Weekly

Uploaded: Fri, May 15, 2020, 9:34 am

The former cardiology chief of the Veterans Affairs Palo Alto Health Care System who is accused of sexually abusing a doctor in 2017 made his first court appearance by telephone in San Jose on Thursday.

A federal grand jury indicted Atherton resident John Giacomini, 71, of engaging in abusive sexual contact against a subordinate doctor during work at the hospital around December 2017, according to a press release issued Thursday by the U.S. Attorney's Office. Court documents show the indictment, which remains sealed, was filed on March 12.

If Giacomini is convicted of the abusive sexual contact charge, he faces a maximum sentence of two years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Giacomini served as the chief of the Palo Alto VA's Cardiology Department for 30 years, the U.S. Attorney's Office said. He also served as a professor of cardiovascular medicine at Stanford Medical School, according to past press releases from the university. According to a report by the Palo Alto Daily Post, he was placed on leave after the school conducted an investigation based on a complaint filed against the doctor in June 2018. The university did not disclose the nature of the complaint or investigation.

Giacomini is currently released on a $200,000 bond and is being supervised by the United States Pretrial Services Office in San Jose. He is set to return to court for a status conference on July 7.

Comments

History guy
Portola Valley: Brookside Park
on May 15, 2020 at 1:51 pm
History guy, Portola Valley: Brookside Park
on May 15, 2020 at 1:51 pm
6 people like this

All we really need to know is the charge, not the name of the suspect. If he is convicted of this charge, there will be plenty of publicity and time to release his name. I think those accused of such activities should be given the same privacy as rape victims when the incidents are published.


Confused
Portola Valley: Westridge
on May 15, 2020 at 4:14 pm
Confused, Portola Valley: Westridge
on May 15, 2020 at 4:14 pm
4 people like this

I, too, am confused about why the alleged perpetrator was named (the Almanac, I think, has a policy of not naming people arrested for alleged crimes.) Is it because he has been indicted? This does mean there's sufficient evidence that a crime has occurred. As well, he was obviously named in the press release by the Attorney General's office. Is that why he is named in this story?


Confused
Portola Valley: Westridge
on May 15, 2020 at 4:21 pm
Confused, Portola Valley: Westridge
on May 15, 2020 at 4:21 pm
Like this comment

Aha---the indictment memo is release via the Freedom of Information Act. No wonder---there is evidence of more than one instance, and he was terminated by by the VA and Stanford for cause. This article (following link) details the memo:

Web Link


Publish
Menlo Park: Felton Gables
on May 15, 2020 at 11:14 pm
Publish, Menlo Park: Felton Gables
on May 15, 2020 at 11:14 pm
1 person likes this

Privacy for crooks? We going to do secret renditions too. Get arrested and everyone should know if you can’t act right


Don't miss out on the discussion!
Sign up to be notified of new comments on this topic.

Post a comment

Posting an item on Town Square is simple and requires no registration. Just complete this form and hit "submit" and your topic will appear online. Please be respectful and truthful in your postings so Town Square will continue to be a thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information and opinion. All postings are subject to our TERMS OF USE, and may be deleted if deemed inappropriate by our staff.

We prefer that you use your real name, but you may use any "member" name you wish.

Not sure?