Medical Malpractice and Personal Injury Law Blog

Lawsuit Against Doctor Accused of Abusing Child Patient

Posted by Briggs Bedigian | Sep 27, 2016 | 0 Comments

We have reported on a number of cases where doctors have been accused of sexual misconduct with patients. In those reported incidents, most of the victims were women who were inappropriately touched by their doctors. Now, an adult man is filing a lawsuit against a doctor that he alleges molested him when he was a child.

A 44-year-old man has filed a lawsuit against a doctor who he alleges molested him when he was a young patient at Tufts Medical Center. The young patient, who has not been named in court documents, was admitted to the medical center when he was 11-years-old for treatment for an eating disorder. He was treated for four months and then treated with follow-up care at an outpatient clinic.

During his time at the medical center, the man claims Dr. William Richard Bonner, who was a doctor in training at the time, sexually abused him over the course of several unsupervised exams. The man has filed a lawsuit in Suffolk Superior Court and named Tufts Medical Center as an additional defendant.

Dr. Bonner, who is now a pediatric anesthesiologist at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, has declined to comment. Tufts Medical Center says that after an investigation in 1984, the allegations were found to be without merit.

The man's mother says that looking back, it seemed unusual that a doctor would give so much attention to a young boy. Bonner gave the child gifts during his hospital stay, including sports jerseys and sporting equipment. He also allegedly called the boy often at home after he was discharged.

The boy continued to see Dr. Bonner during his outpatient visits until the boy refused to go into the exam room. When his mother asked what was wrong, the boy said Dr. Bonner required him to take off all his clothes, and that the examination performed was painful. He said he was “frozen with fear” while Bonner molested him, fondling his genitals.

When confronted with the boy's accusations, Dr. Bonner told them to leave. The boy's mother then talked to another doctor, who then talked to the boy about what had occurred. The doctor said she believed the child's version of what happened and reported it to the hospital. A hospital administrator talked to the boy and his mother but said if they went to the authorities, the boy would likely have to testify in court.

The boy's mother decided not to continue with going after the doctor out of concern for how difficult it would be for her child to testify in court about what had happened to him. Now, years later, the man has decided it is time to do something about what happened, motivated by the fact that he now has young children of his own. He says taking his children in for medical checkups triggered something in him to take action.

If you or a loved one has been harmed or assaulted by a doctor, Gilman & Bedigian team is ready to help. We are fully equipped to handle the complex process of filing a medical malpractice claim. Our staff, including a physician and attorneys with decades of medical malpractice litigation experience, will focus on getting you compensated, so you can focus on healing and moving forward.

About the Author

Briggs Bedigian

H. Briggs Bedigian (“Briggs”) is a founding partner of Gilman & Bedigian, LLC.  Prior to forming Gilman & Bedigian, LLC, Briggs was a partner at Wais, Vogelstein and Bedigian, LLC, where he was the head of the firm's litigation practice.  Briggs' legal practice is focused on representing clients involved in medical malpractice and catastrophic personal injury cases. 

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