A Michigan osteopathic physician who was also certified as an athletic trainer and was employed by Michigan State University (MSU) until his employment was terminated in September 2016 is alleged to have sexually abused and sexually molested many female MSU athletes during his employment, including a then 18-year-old who recently filed a lawsuit in California against the physician and MSU.
The plaintiff alleges that she was recruited in 1997 by MSU to play softball on a full athletic scholarship. Then, in 1998, MSU allegedly referred the plaintiff to the defendant physician for treatment of her chronic back pain associated with her softball training.
The California lawsuit that was filed on December 21, 2016 alleges that the plaintiff was sexually abused by the physician on more than 10 occasions under the guise of legitimate medical treatment. She further alleges that she reported the sexual abuse to the highest ranking members of MSU’s training staff in 2000, and was intimidated, coerced, and threatened by MSU training staff to believe that she had not been sexually abused and to not make such allegations. Thereafter, the plaintiff was further treated by the defendant physician and was allegedly further sexually abused by him.
The plaintiff alleges in her lawsuit that the defendant physician was retained by MSU “to provide care, treatment and athletic training to the MSU athletes” and further alleges that the defendant physician sexually abused and molested “dozens” of female athletes at MSU through his “use of his position, authority and trust as an osteopathic medical doctor.”
In her particular case, the plaintiff alleges that when she was 18 years old, she went to the defendant physician at MSU and that he touched her vagina, supposedly to heal her back pain. As her treatments continued, the plaintiff alleges that the defendant physician had her remove her pants and then inserted his bare, ungloved, and unlubricated hand into her vagina for what he described as “intravaginal adjustment” of her bones, for his own sexual gratification.
The California lawyers for the plaintiff reportedly represent 15 other former MSU female athletes in their claims against the defendant osteopathic physician regarding alleged sexual abuse and molestation. The 15 former MSU athletes have reportedly provided their notice of intent to file claims against MSU but have not yet filed their lawsuits.
In November 2016, the former MSU osteopathic physician reportedly was charged with three counts of first degree criminal sexual assault with a person under 13, for allegedly repeatedly sexually assaulting a young girl between 1998 and 2005, beginning when she was six years old. In December 2016, the physician reportedly was arrested pursuant to a two-count indictment charging him with federal child pornography crimes for allegedly possessing thousands of images of child pornography.
If you or a family member may have been harmed by the misconduct or other wrongdoing of a physician in the United States, including sexual abuse or molestation, you should promptly consult with a local medical malpractice attorney in your state who may investigate your sexual misconduct claim for you and represent you in a lawsuit against the physician and/or his employer, if appropriate.
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