LAPD begins criminal probe of former USC gynecologist

Xinhua
The LAPD said on Tuesday that it has launched a criminal investigation into accusations against Dr. George Tyndall, a former gynecologist at the University of Southern California.
Xinhua
Reuters

The Engemann Student Health Center is shown at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, California, US, on May 22, 2018. 

The Los Angeles Police Department said on Tuesday that it has launched a criminal investigation into accusations against Dr. George Tyndall, a former gynecologist at the University of Southern California.

The LAPD has received allegations from 52 victims, of whom 13 directly contacted the police, while the other 39 were referred from the USC, said Captain William Hayes in a press conference.

The LAPD urges more students, both past and present, who believe they are victims of Tyndall's misconduct, to come forward by calling the Special Assault Section.

"LAPD stands ready to listen, respond, investigate, and ultimately work with prosecutors where the facts may lead us," said Assistant Chief Beatrice Girmala, who called Tyndall's behavior and practices "beyond the norms of medical profession and gynecological examinations."

Hayes said Tyndall may have seen more than 10,000 students during his 30 years of tenure at USC, adding that some of the victims might be minors since the age of enrolled students ranges from 17 to 22.

Allegations against Tyndall's misconduct date back to 1990. Though numerous complaints were brought to the attention of the school, the USC failed to act. C.L. Max Nikias, president of the USC, announced his plan on Friday to step down amid the scandal.

According to the LAPD, over 200 victims have contacted the USC via the hotline set up by the school. However, only 39 of them agreed to disclose their information to the police.

Asked how international victims can file complaints, Deputy Chief Justin Eisenberg said the best way to contact the police is by phone or email, and the police may arrange a video conference with the victims if necessary.

The USC is a leading private research university located in Los Angeles in the US state of California. A total of 45,500 students were enrolled in the 2017-2018 academic year, including around 5,400 from China's mainland.

According to the Los Angeles Times, some of Tyndall's colleagues feared that the gynecologist has been targeting the university's growing population of Chinese students in recent years. Those Chinese students often had a limited knowledge of the English language and American medical norms.

USC Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs Michael Quick denied the report of Tyndall's targeting Chinese and other international students.

"Although this was alleged, there is no evidence that any one group of students was affected more than others," Quick said in a message sent to his faculty and staff colleagues last week.

The USC has been sued by some former students over the scandal. The Consulate General of China in Los Angeles expressed its concern over the scandal on May 16, requesting the university to take serious action to investigate the issue and protect Chinese students from illegal acts.

Special Reports
Top