Ex-SJSU sports medicine director gets 2-years federal prison for unlawfully touching female athletes

A former director of sports medicine and athletic trainer at San Jose State University was sentenced on Tuesday to two years in federal prison for groping female student athletes under the guise of providing medical treatment, officials say

The sentencing on the civil rights violations of four female-student athletes was handed down by a judge, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of California. 

"Today’s sentence sends a clear message that public school officials who exploit their positions of authority to sexually abuse and harass students will face serious consequences for their actions," said Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. Clarke said these violations from people in positions of power and trust, under the guise of medical treatment, will not be tolerated by the Justice Department. 

"Shaw’s violation of that relationship is reprehensible, as was reflected in his sentence. I commend the student athletes for their moral courage in coming forward to challenge Shaw. Their bravery prevented Shaw from committing further harm to others, and civil rights violations will continue to be a top priority for the FBI," said FBI Special Agent In Charge Robert Tripp.

Shaw pleaded guilty to the charges on Aug. 15. As part of a plea agreement, he admitted to violating the civil rights of the four students by touching them inappropriately between 2017 and 2020 without their consent and without legitimate medical purpose. 

Last summer, a mistrial was declared in the athletic trainer's criminal trial. 

Shaw worked as the Spartans' sports medicine director and head athletic trainer from 2008 to 2020. He had been in an associate position two years before that. In this trial, eight SJSU female athletes from five different sports teams testified against Shaw. 

Shaw had pleaded not guilty to federal charges of violating the constitutional right to "bodily integrity" of four female athletes. He faced up to six years in prison.  

In addition to Shaw's two-year prison term, the judge ordered him to pay a $15,000 fine. Shaw has been ordered to surrender on or before March 6, 2024 to begin serving his prison term.