Dr. Romelito Delacruz has been found not guilty of three counts of sexual assault. The ear, nose and throat surgeon had been accused of inappropriately examining three female patients, including one who was 16 years old at the time. One of the women who testified was in the courtroom for the decision and says she’s disappointed.
“I think they need to change the legal standards a little bit more and not let doctors off as easy or dismissive, because they are such a vitality needed in that community. We don’t need people like him touching people or doing things inappropriately.”
Delacruz was previously suspended from the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Alberta for six months of 2012 after a tribunal found him guilty of two complaints. In the first, he was accused of touching the buttocks and labia of a woman who went in with issues after a chin implant. The second patient was the minor, who was referred to Dr. Delacruz for a tonsillectomy but says he exposed and examined her breasts and touched her buttocks and labia without gloves.
The third patient made a report to police but not the CPSA. She says when she went in for a tummy tuck, Dr. Delacruz wore only one glove and touched her clitoris and her vagina and inserted his finger. She says she’s worried about him continuing to practice in the city.
“I’ve been told that he’s not allowed to see any female patients; now, how true that is I don’t know but I am happy about that. Personally, I think he should have gone to jail for what he has done, or at least been suspended. I have to live with the fact that he could go out and do that again.”
A nine day trial was held in February. Justice Ross’ 28-page decision should be released today, but in announcing her verdict, she attributed it to “honest but mistaken belief of fact.”