Abuse suspect worked at Hoag

A former child-care worker at Hoag Hospital, UC Irvine and two private day-care centers in Irvine and Costa Mesa was arrested this month for allegedly sexually abusing a 3-year-old girl in Los Angeles County, according to authorities.

Now police are investigating whether Thomas Burke Pulver, 36, has any victims related to his employment Orange County.

Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department deputies arrested Pulver, a La Mirada resident, on Aug. 15 after allegations surfaced about him performing lewd acts on a young family member.

As detectives investigated, they realized Pulver had been working with children for years in Orange County, according to a sheriff's department announcement Friday.

Most recently, he'd been working at Hoag Hospital's child-care center in Newport Beach since September 2013, according to Newport Beach police.

Hoag announced Saturday that it no longer employed Pulver.

"The allegations involving Thomas Pulver are disturbing," Nina Robinson, a communications vice president for Hoag, said in a prepared statement. "We are cooperating fully with the police investigation."

During the hiring process, Hoag fingerprinted Pulver, ran a background check, queried the Megan's Law database and checked his criminal history, Robinson said.

Immediately before his job at Hoag, Pulver worked in child care at UCI from July 2008 to September 2013, said Cathy Lawhon a university spokeswoman.

UCI said it has notified all current clients at the center where Pulver worked and reached out to former clients if there was up-to-date contact information on file.

The center is open to the public but mostly used by UCI employees, according to Lawhon.

To work there, Pulver was screened by the county, which includes a Justice Department background check, Lawhon said.

Before UCI, police said Pulver worked at two private day-care centers: the Kiddie Academy in Irvine from January to June 2008 and Matt Kline Headstart in Costa Mesa from December 2007 to April 2008.

Investigators say they so far haven't found any evidence of sexual abuse by Pulver in Orange County, but police have asked for help locating possible victims or any kids he may have interacted with at his child-care jobs.

Pulver is already facing eight felony counts in Los Angeles Superior Court that could carry a sentence of 15 years to life in prison, according the sheriff's department.

He is being held in lieu of $2.4 million bail.

Pulver also worked in child care at Cal State Fullerton from early 2005 to early 2009, according to a report in the Orange County Register.

Anyone with information about Pulver can contact Irvine police at (949) 724-7200; Newport Beach police Det. Kristen Fox at (949) 644-3776; UCI police at (949) 824-1885; or Costa Mesa police at (714) 754-5360.

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