Former Chicago-area gynecologist, Dr. Bruce Sylvester Smith, has been charged with criminal sexual assault almost a decade after a patient claimed that he sexually assaulted her during a routine prenatal visit, reports the Chicago Tribune.
After repeatedly claiming that there was no sexual contact between he and the patient, he finally admitted to it but claimed that it was consensual. Smith said he initially lied about it to protect his job and his marriage.
Though Smith claims that the patient initiated the contact, records reflect that she contacted a rape hotline on the day that the incident occurred. The victim said that she was too afraid to stop him during the act:
“He’s a doctor, and he’s down there with my baby,” the woman told authorities in 2008.
No action was taken against Smith until several other patient stepped forward over the years and accused him of sexual misconduct. His license was eventually revoked in 2011.
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The Chicago Tribune has more:
Testifying in a calm, low voice Wednesday at the Leighton Criminal Court Building, Smith, 60, said he was performing a pelvic exam on the alleged victim at Chicago’s Kennedy Medical Service Corp. in August 2002 when she grabbed his hand under the sheet and forced him into a sexual act.
Smith said no words were exchanged but that the patient was looking at him and “moaning.”
“At that point I dropped my pants” and had consensual intercourse with her, Smith told jurors in Judge Clayton Crane’s courtroom.
On cross-examination, Assistant State’s Attorney Annette Milleville ridiculed Smith’s account, asking repeatedly why he didn’t say anything or put a stop to it if the patient had initiated the contact.
“I was curious,” Smith said.
State disciplinary records show that immediately after leaving Smith’s office, the woman called her sister, who contacted a rape hot line, the Tribune reported in 2010 as part of a series on lax regulatory procedures for doctors accused of abusing patients. At a counselor’s urging, the woman underwent a rape exam at the University of Chicago Hospitals and filed a complaint with Chicago police days later.
If convicted of the felony charge, Smith faces up to 15 years in prison.