Police Searching for Sexual Assault Suspect Robert Delacruz, Counselor for Adults With Disabilities

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Irvine Special Needs Counselor Robert Delacruz Accused of Sexual Assault

Irvine Special Needs Counselor Robert Delacruz Accused of Sexual Assault

Apr 11, 2024

Irvine Police officials are requesting the public’s assistance with an ongoing search for a sexual assault suspect.

Robert Delacruz, 58, a special needs counselor for adults, is alleged to have sexually assaulted his client for nearly two years, CBS News reported.

The Irvine Police are searching for a man who allegedly repeatedly sexually assaulted a disabled adult

The alleged victim, a woman who attended Delacruz’s specialized day program for adults with disabilities, told police the counselor coerced her into engaging in sex acts from June 2022 to March 2024. Delacruz is also the woman’s assigned caretaker, per the CBS report.

Robert Delacruz is a resident of Tustin, and Irvine Police detectives obtained a search warrant for the suspect’s home where they reportedly discovered “additional evidence” related to the sexual assault investigation.

Irvine Police Department officers are currently searching for Delacruz, and are urging anyone with information on his whereabouts to contact detective Craig Voors via email or by calling 949-724-7131.

Police also noted that Delacruz is believed to drive a blue 2014 Toyota FJ Cruiser with California license plates.

According to a report from KTLA, Irvine Police currently do not believe there are any additional sexual assault victims harmed by special needs counselor Robert Delacruz.

Sexual Abuse of People With Disabilities is Known as a ‘Silent Epidemic’

National Public Radio recently ran a story calling sexual abuse against individuals with disabilities “the sexual assault pandemic no one talks about.” Sadly, countless victims are sexually abused every year by caretakers, nurses, counselors, and other professionals with continued and unsupervised access to the disabled.

What’s more unfortunate is the fact that sexual abuse against the disabled is very rarely reported.

As we noted in an earlier D Law Group blog, there are a number of important statistics related to disability sexual abuse which should be known by the general public.

How Common is Sexual Abuse of People With Disabilities?

We’ll review some 2024 statistics on sexual assault against persons with disabilities below. But first, it’s important to understand that certain disabilities can increase the risk of sexual abuse. A person who requires assistance with daily tasks is usually dependent on their caretaker. As a result, the caretaker can use this position of power to coerce the person with a disability into non-consensual sexual activities. Some abusers will even remove their victim’s communication device, making reporting a sex crime almost impossible.

Even with proper communication devices available, it can be very difficult for those with disabilities to report a sexual assault (even when they want to do so). Furthermore, authorities and law enforcement might not take an allegation seriously or may have difficulty believing complaints by people with disabilities. Moreover, it is often difficult for someone with a physical disability to express the abuse.

In addition, some people with severe disabilities might not be able to fully understand what has happened to them when a sex crime occurs. They may also not realize that an act of sexual abuse was wrong – and this raises the question of consent, which we will discuss in more detail below.

Here are some statistics for 2024 on sexual abuse of persons with disabilities:

  • Sexual abuse primarily impacts women, and those with disabilities are three times as likely to be physically abused or assaulted.
  • The University of Michigan estimated that approximately 90% of all people with developmental disabilities experience sexual assault at some point in life.
  • The Department of Justice issued a report which included data confirming that people with intellectual disabilities are seven times more likely to be victims of sex crimes than people without disabilities.
  • A 2005 survey of people with disabilities found that 60% of the people had been subjected to some form of unwanted sexual activity.
  • In that 2005 study, nearly half of the 60% of victims sadly did not report their assaults.
  • 83% of women with disabilities will be sexually assaulted in their lives.
  • Only 3% of sex crimes involving people with developmental disabilities are ever reported.
  • Women with a disability are far more likely to have a history of undesired sex with an intimate partner: 19.7% of women with a disability compared to 8.2% of women without a disability.
  • Around 80% of women and 30% of men with developmental disabilities have been sexually assaulted in their lifetime.
  • Approximately 50% of the women with disabilities who are assaulted will be victimized more than 10 times throughout their lives (repeated abuse is very common).

Let’s look at the issue of sexual consent for individuals with disabilities.

Can a Disabled Person Give Sexual Consent?

As we’ve noted countless times on the D Law Group blog, consent is necessary every single time in order for a sexual act or encounter to be considered legal. This is true regardless of whether the person has any type of disability – physical or mental. Each person engaging in any type of sexual act must obtain consent from the other person. But when one of the people engaging in sexual activity has a disability, the question of consent becomes complicated. Moreover, the type and severity of the individual’s disability can impact the ability to give sexual consent.

For example, many disabilities do not prevent a person from giving consent. But there are specific disabilities which can make it impossible under the law for the person to either:

  1. understand what a sexual act is, or
  2. communicate whether or not they want to engage in sexual activity.

These types of severe disabilities – whether due to physical or cognitive impairment – prevent a person from meeting the legal definition under California law in order have the ability to give consent.

Can I File a Lawsuit for Being Sexually Assaulted by a Caretaker or Counselor?

Survivors of sexual assault have rights under California law which extend beyond any criminal proceedings which may impact a predator. In fact, filing a civil claim for financial compensation can be done regardless of whether or not any criminal charges are ever filed against your abuser.

At Dordulian Law Group (D Law Group), our experienced and dedicated disability abuse attorneys are part of the four-tiered SAJE Team (Sexual Assault Justice Experts). With D Law Group, you not only have access to the very best California disability sexual abuse lawyers available, but you also have access to a 24/7 support network of in-house professionals:

  • Retired LAPD sex crimes detective Moses Castillo
  • A licensed clinical therapist with over 15 years’ experience
  • A licensed and accredited victim advocate

D Law Group’s SAJE Team is standing by to help answer any questions you may have regarding a sex crime or a survivor’s capacity to give consent depending on the severity of his or her disability.

Contact our top-rated team of expert sexual abuse attorneys online or by phone today to pursue justice and secure a financial award for damages.

Contact us today for a free and confidential consultation by calling 866-GO-SEE-SAM. There is never any upfront fee or out-of-pocket expense for our Irvine special needs counselor sex abuse attorney representation. You don’t pay a penny until we’ve secured a maximum financial settlement or verdict for your case.

Reach out to a member of the D Law Group team today to discuss your counselor Robert Delacruz sexual abuse case.

Check also:

Omar Galeana, Diegueño Middle School Staffer, Accused of Sexual Abuse of Encinitas Student
Former Boys & Girls Club Counselor Elijah Barrera Arrested on Child Sex Abuse Charges
San Dimas Chiropractor Richard Carnow Accused of Sexually Assaulting Multiple Women
Oxnard Personal Trainer Keith Dudley Arrested for Sexually Assaulting Teenage Student
Victorville Teacher Brett Dahl Arrested in Child Molestation Investigation


Go See Sam