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JBLM Army base doctor accused of sexually assaulting 42 patients

PIERCE COUNTY—Major Michael Stockin, 37, an anesthesiologist working at Joint Base Lewis-McChord U.S. Army air base near Tacoma, is being investigated for the alleged sexual assault of at least, 42 servicemen. He now faces over 50 charges, including abusive sexual misconduct and indecent viewing under the military code of justice, spanning over the last two years.

Michael Stockin

The U.S. Army is investigating the incidents which involved interviewing several male patients who said Stockin improperly examined and groped their genitals under the guise of a sensory examination. The Army further stated that Stockin will be “innocent until proven guilty” and the investigation will continue through trial.

One of these victims told reporters at CBS News he visited Dr. Stockin for chronic shoulder pain and was “confused” when the doctor asked him to drop his pants so that he could “examine his groin.” That victim has now retired from the Army after serving for 20 years including three completed combat tours.

Ryan Guilds, Civilian Victims Attorney who is representing seven of Stockin’s accusers pro bono, told CBS News the scope and scale of the number of patients Stockin allegedly sexually violated is “unprecedented” in U.S. military history. Guilds is convinced the actual number of victims is in the hundreds despite just 42 patients stepping forward.

According to a report by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) male victims of sexual assault are far less likely to come forward concerning their abuse than female victims, based on common stigmas and negative connotations resulting therein. All of Dr. Stockin’s alleged victims, so far, have been men.

Stockin has since been suspended from patient care. It is unclear whether there were any other victims at other Army hospitals. Over his 10-year military career, Stockin has worked in Iraq, Tripler Army Medical Center in Hawaii, and Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. His lawyer argues that Stockin is innocent of all charges, but if found guilty, his client will serve up to 300 years in a military prison.

Stockin’s case has been compared to that of Larry Nassar who was convicted of sexually assaulting at least 265 young female athletes under the guise of medical treatment back in 2016. Nassar is now serving a life sentence following these charges and admitting to child pornography and tampering of evidence.

According to a report by the National Library of Medicine, 15.7% of military personnel and veterans report Military Sexual Trauma (MST) with 3.9% of them being male and 38.4% being female, measuring instances of both harassment and assault.

If you are having any current difficulties related to Military Sexual Trauma (MST), the U.S. Department of Veterans affairs encourages you to talk with an MST Coordinator at a VA health care facility near you.

For the National Sexual Assault hotline call: 1-800-656-4673.

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