Alabama ‘Dr Dick’ convicted of three counts of harassment as 10 women sue him for sexual misconduct

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An Alabama doctor accused of sexual misconduct by at least 10 women has been convicted on three counts of harassment involving female patients.  

Dr Michael Dick was arrested in January after multiple former patients filed warrants alleging that he had behaved inappropriately while treating them at Alabama Medicine and Rheumatology clinic in Decatur.

The physician, who pleaded guilty to two counts after having been convicted of the first one, was sentenced on Friday to a $500 fine and 30 days in jail in each of the three counts.  

Dick has denied all allegations against him and has submitted the case for appeal. 

Dick’s first conviction stemmed from allegations by former patient Ashley Newcom, who said the doctor had touched her face innappropriately and told her she was beautiful. 

A second accuser, Cheree Jordan, told AL.com that Dick kissed her on the mouth while she was in the exam room seeing him for arthritis-related problems.

In early September, Dick’s defense team introduced a motion to conceal details of the case from the public. 

The motion claimed that releasing information could put nurses who are said to have witnessed the alleged abuse at risk. 

‘The accusations plaintiffs make in this case are scandalous and pose a serious threat of harassment and particularized harm to the (nursing staff),’ according to lawyer Joel Williams. 

‘These accusations create the appearance that (the nursing staff) have condoned and facilitated offensive sexual acts against other women.’

Many of the ten women who filed a suit against Dick earlier this year alleged that nurses were in the exam room when the sexual misconduct and harassment occurred.  

Dick has continued to run his practice since being arrested, but that could change following last week’s conviction.

The Alabama Board of Medical Examiners, which oversees investigations into physician behavior, is now in the process of determining whether his license is suspended or revoked.

‘Dr. Michael Dick has been and remains under investigation by the Board, and we have been in communication with law enforcement throughout that process,’ general counsel Wilson Hunter told AL.com.  

‘Today’s convictions permit the Board to act, if it chooses to, without compromising the criminal investigation. We expect to be able to present our own findings to the Board at its next meeting.’ 

Hunter added that the Board is committed to protecting patients who come forward with abuse allegations.  

‘When a doctor violates the trust that every patient has a right to expect, we want to hear about it,’ he said. 

‘We are dependent on patients speaking up to prosecute these cases. Alabama law provides immunity from retaliation if a patient complains against a doctor for violating that trust relationship, and the Board can and does make every effort to protect patients in such cases.’

AL.com also reported that Dick was arrested in 2011 after a female patient accused him of harassment, but the charge was later dropped.  

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