Stalking case allowed at molestation trial
A Kauai doctor was convicted in Florida nearly a decade ago
LIHUE » A Kauai osteopathic doctor charged in 2004 with molesting a 13-year-old male patient had been convicted nearly a decade ago of stalking another boy in Florida.
Michael Green, lawyer for Dr. Jon Van Cleave, tried to block evidence of the misdemeanor stalking conviction from being used in Van Cleave's trial June 26 on one count of third-degree sexual assault, arguing that it had nothing to do with the Kauai case and would prejudice jurors.
But Circuit Court Judge Kathleen Watanabe agreed with prosecutors that the evidence could be introduced in the trial because of the similarities between the two cases, which both involved teenage boys.
Deputy Prosecutor Jennifer Winn also argued that Van Cleave gave the boys similar gifts -- expensive gold necklaces -- and often drove by their homes. But the boy in Florida denied any physical relationship with Van Cleave.
In the Kauai case, according to court records in a lawsuit filed by the parents of the boy, Van Cleave began treating the boy's mother for chronic fatigue in 2001. He suggested that the boy, then 13, would also benefit from osteopathic treatment.
Osteopathy is a type of medicine with greater emphasis on the interrelationship of muscle and bones. Doctors of osteopathy go to osteopathic medical schools and are board certified by the state.
According to the suit, the Kauai boy received gifts from the doctor over six months, including the gold necklace, video game systems, $10,000 and tuition at his private school.
In the meantime, the boy was receiving regular treatment as the mother waited behind a screen.
On Feb. 1, 2002, the boy, visibly upset, "rushed from the doctor's office" and later revealed to his mother that he had been sexually assaulted, according to the suit.
Green said yesterday that the son and the mother are admitted liars, motivated by greed.
In the Florida case, the boy, then 16, became friends with Van Cleave after the doctor moved into the same subdivision as the boy and his family.
According to police reports in the Pinellas County, Fla., case, after the boy's parents became aware of the relationship and tried to put a stop to it, Van Cleave repeatedly drove and bicycled past the boy's home, and called him on the phone.
Green said yesterday that he wanted all court records involving the Florida case handed over so that he could look through them and perhaps find inconsistencies.
Green said his client still sees patients at his Kauai office from time to time.