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State hospital chief to appear in court on charges of molesting adopted son

February 26, 2010 |  7:51 am

Foulk With the executive director of Napa State Hospital scheduled to appear in a Los Angeles County court Friday on charges he molested his adopted son, Long Beach police investigators have revealed his five alleged victims are all boys under 14.

Detectives said there may be more victims of Claude Edward Foulk, 62, who was arrested after a lengthy investigation into alleged molestations in southern and northern California. L.A. County prosecutors have charged Foulk with 35 felony counts, including 22 counts of forcible oral copulation and 11 counts of sodomy by use of force.

Authorities said they have evidence Foulk molested at least five children all under 14, including foster children in his care. They said the statute of limitations in the other cases had expired.

The incidents occurred between 1975 and 2004 in Long Beach and 2004 to 2006 in a Sacramento suburb. Hours after his arrest Wednesday, state officials announced that they had terminated Foulk's employment as the director of a hospital that houses mentally ill criminals.

According to Long Beach Police Cmdr. Jeff Johnson, investigators began building their case in September when one of Foulk's former foster children contacted them with details about abuse he allegedly suffered decades earlier. The man, who is now in his 40s, came forward after learning that Foulk was heading the hospital, authorities said.

Detectives believe that Foulk used his position working at mental hospitals in Southern California to make connections with children. Johnson said Foulk also came into contact with alleged victims who lived in his neighborhood.

Detectives said Foulk met some of his alleged victims as far back as 1975. Johnson said most of the alleged incidents occurred before 1988, which is the cutoff under the statute of limitations.

The charges filed this week involve his adopted son, now in his mid-20s, who alleges Foulk molested him from 1992 to 2006.

Some employees at Napa State Hospital said they were concerned because Foulk lived in a house on the grounds next to a day-care center. The charges do not include allegations of molestation at the Napa hospital, but Long Beach police said they believe there may be more victims in L.A. County and Northern California.

Foulk, a registered nurse, previously worked as a manager at the California Department of Mental Health. Before that, he served as chief executive at community acute psychiatric hospitals, including CPC Horizon Hospital and Clinic in Pomona and CPC Alhambra Psychiatric Hospital in Rosemead, according to state documents.

Anyone who has information is urged to contact Long Beach police sex crimes detectives at (562) 570-7368.

-- Richard Winton

Photo: Booking shot of Claude Edward Foulk. Credit: Long Beach Police Department.