Former Santa Clara City Council Member and front-runner for Ken Yeager’s County Supervisor seat Dominic Caserta will not face criminal charges over the accusations of sexual harassment that drove him from office and into indefinite leave from his Santa Clara High School teaching job.
The Santa Clara County District Attorney said in a statement yesterday that there wasn’t enough evidence for criminal charges.
“After a thorough review and legal analysis of Dominic Caserta’s behavior toward a number of girls and women in recent years,” Assistant DA Terry Harman said, “our office has concluded that there is insufficient evidence to file criminal charges.”
“However, crime or not,” said Harmon, “it is unacceptable to treat women with anything less than respect and dignity.”
About a month before the June primary election, Caserta’s campaign manager — Ian Crueldad, who went on to work for Yes on Measure A — told San José Inside that Caserta walked around his campaign office (in the candidate’s home) in a towel.
When Inside asked Santa Clara Unified about complaints against Caserta, Caserta’s entire personnel file was sent to the online publication without review or redaction, and to all 1,600 district employees as well.
The broadcasting of two previous complaints against Caserta during his teaching tenure set off a series of accusations from former students claiming that Caserta had touched them in sexually suggestive ways or said suggestive things.
His accusers included another campaign worker, German college student Lydia Jungkind, who described a pattern of suggestive conduct throughout the months she worked on his campaign.
Within weeks of the accusations surfacing Caserta left the Supervisor race, went on leave from his teaching job and resigned his Santa Clara City Council seat; leaving a vacancy that Mayor Lisa Gillmor pushed to fill by appointment.
Reportedly, 15 complaints against Caserta were lodged with the Santa Clara Police Department. None of these, apparently, could be substantiated or rose to the level of a crime according to the District Attorney.
Correction: A previous version of this post called Ian Crueldad an intern for Caserta’s campaign, he was the campaign manager. We apologize for the error.