A prominent emergency room doctor at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, arrested in January on charges that he ejaculated on a sedated patient’s face, has been indicted on sexual abuse charges against four women, announced the office of Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance. Dr. David H. Newman hasn’t yet entered a plea.
Vance’s office announced Thursday that Newman is being indicted on charges of sexually abusing four female patients between August 2015 and January 2016. The first accuser to go public, a 22-year-old woman, told the New York Daily News in January that she visited the Mount Sinai ER with shoulder pain. While she was heavily sedated, she alleges, Newman fondled her breasts and ejaculated on her. That woman sued Mount Sinai and Newman individually in February.
A week later, a second woman said Newman had abused her during a September 2015 exam. Vance’s announcement says all four women are between the ages of 18 and 29. Each visited the ER with minor ailments: a headache, a cold, a rash, and the woman with shoulder pain. In her case, Newman is accused of administering additional medication beyond the morphine a nurse had already given her before he assaulted her.
Newman is charged with one count of sexual abuse in the first degree, a felony, and four counts of sexual abuse in the third degree, a misdemeanor. The felony sexual abuse count is a Class D felony, which can carry a maximum of seven years in prison but is also punishable by probation and no jail time.
Newman, a researcher and TED talker who wrote about medical evidence and the “fraying of the doctor-patient bond” wrote frequent editorials for the Huffington Post. He is married with small children, and was the subject of a piece in the Times in January about how a promising doctor with a “gracious home” in New Jersey and a “storybook” wedding could be the subject of such shocking allegations.
Jezebel received several emails from friends and colleagues of Dr. Newman’s after we reported on the initial allegations, scolding us for writing about them: “I am writing to express how horrified I am that you would print this article and potentially cause so much heartache and potentially destroy the career of a man who is likely innocent,” one wrote. Another woman identifying herself as a former colleague of Newman’s suggested his accuser suffered from mental health issues.
Newman giving a TedX talk in 2011. Screengrab via YouTube/ColumbiaSEAS