Dr. Johnnie Barto mugshot

Alleged pedophile doctor sexually assaults children, including INFANTS & TODDLERS, for decades: Police

Police say a Pennsylvania doctor, arrested in January for molesting a 12-year-old girl in his office, now stands accused of sexually abusing more than 25 other children, infants and toddlers, dating back to the 1980s.

Dr. Johnnie Wilson “Jack” Barto, 70, used his role at a pediatric practice in Johnstown to “feed his own sick sexual desire,” Attorney General Josh Shapiro said Monday, according to CBS Pittsburgh.  

Authorities said following the suspect’s January arrest, his license was suspended and several new complaints surfaced from both former patients and their parents. While he is believed to have molested both boys and girls, most of the alleged victims are female.

Charging documents obtained by CBS Pittsburgh indicate Barto “used his bare fingers to digitally penetrate girls and fondle the genitals of boys” so clandestinely that sometimes the parents of the children were in the very same room. According to police, in a least two of the incidents Barto blocked a mother’s view while he molested her daughters, while in other cases he simply said it was a routine part of the exam.

This isn’t the first time Barto has faced such allegations. According to The Tribune-Democrat, prior to his arrest earlier this year, the suspect was accused in 1998 of sexually molesting two young girls at their appointments. However, he denied the allegations and was never charged. Based on a lack of evidence, the Board of Medicine determined Barto could retain his license.

In 1997, a teen girl about 16 years old told her physician mother that Barto touched her inappropriately during an exam, according to authorities. Upon confrontation after the alleged act, “he promised he would never examine a female patient again,” police wrote in a report.

The suspect also faces an “involuntary deviate sexual intercourse” charge involving a 12-year-old female he treated at his office in the mid-1990s. The girl visited the doctor for a suspected ear infection, but said he never examined her ear.  

In 2017, police said a woman confronted the former doctor when she was made to wait outside of his room as he examined her son’s genitalia—but the boy was merely suffering from the flu. When she walked back into the room, she witnessed the man fondling her son and “immediately confronted” him before he walked away while offering no explanation.

The latest plethora of allegations resulted in the attorney general’s office filing 69 additional counts against the purported pedophile. In addition to reportedly molesting patients, officials said after his January arrest, two female relatives came forward, telling police they were fondled by the man as children.

Shapiro expressed sorrow towards the victims and their families at a press conference Monday.

“Barto violated every tenet of his oath as a doctor and as a decent human being, violating the trust of his victims, their parents and of the entire community.”

The suspect remains behind bars at the Cambria County Jail on a $1 million bond in connection with the new charges, which include indecent assault, aggravated indecent assault and child endangerment. He is expected in court for a hearing August 10.

Shapiro urges anyone with additional information to call a state hotline established for the investigation at 412-565-7680.

[Feature Photo: Johnnie Barto/Cambria County Sheriff’s Office]