San Jose therapist arrested for sexually assaulting special needs child

A behavioral therapist has been arrested on suspicion of sexually assaulting his minor client during a session at her San Jose home, according to the San Jose Police Department.

Alejandro Lopez Nunez was a behavioral therapist with Trumpet Behavioral Health, which cares for clients on the autism spectrum. The company confirmed to KTVU that he has since been terminated and an internal review is underway. Nunez was also a part-time instructional aide at Forest Hill Elementary School when police say the alleged assault occurred. As of Wednesday, Nunez was still listed on the Campbell Union School District website.

Police were called to a house on Saturday where they learned that a sexual assault of a child had happened the previous day. Officers say that a girl was sexually assaulted by Nunez during one of her at-home sessions.

"They were able to basically catch the suspect in the act, act of sexually molesting or assaulting the victim," says Stacie Shih of SJPD.

As police investigated, they alleged that Nunez had assaulted the girl several times since March of this year. Nunez was arrested on Sunday in Santa Clara and booked into the main jail on suspicion of sexual assault of a minor.

Experts at Stanford University said children with special needs or who are on the autism spectrum are particularly vulnerable in these types of cases.


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"They are really at risk to be manipulated, and be bullied, and they can easily be victimized," said Dr. Lawrence Fung of Stanford Medicine.

He recommends vetting therapists, and sitting in on sessions whenever possible, "and making sure that there are checks and balances and ways to monitor the interactions."

"The safety and well-being of our students and staff is our top priority," the Campbell Union School District said in a statement. "The individual worked as a part-time Instructional Aide to provide break coverage to other Instructional Aides, under the supervision of the classroom teacher. To our knowledge, the alleged behavior did not involve our students."

The school district said Nunez was hired in 2022 after undergoing a stringing screening process. Officials said he last worked with their students on June 6, 2024, this year.

A spokesperson for Trumpet Behavioral Health shared the following statement with KTVU:]

"Nothing is more important to us than the health, safety and well-being of the children in our care. As soon as we were made aware of the incident, we took immediate action in cooperation with law enforcement including terminating the employee and beginning an internal review. As a community, we are deeply disturbed and saddened by these allegations. We have extensive safety and conduct protocols that we strictly enforce and that our employees are trained on and expected to uphold." – Trumpet Behavioral Health

Police believe that there may be other victims because Nunez was in a position of trust. Anyone with information about this case or any other potential victims is asked to contact Detective Minten with the SJPD at or 408-277-4102.