This sterling reputation took a sharp turn Tuesday, when Newman was arrested and charged with sexual abuse in court, according to his New York City inmate file.
A criminal complaint cited by the New York Times, NBC and the New York Daily News accuses the doctor of drugging, groping and masturbating on a female patient as well as groping another in two separate incidents.
Authorities said a 29-year-old woman called the police Jan. 12 to recount an assault in Mount Sinai’s emergency room between midnight and 2 a.m. that day.
A law enforcement official told the Times under the condition of anonymity that Newman allegedly gave the woman an excess shot of morphine, causing her to partially lose consciousness while Newman fondled her breasts and ejaculated on her.
Afterward, the woman turned her semen-stained hospital gown over to police.
These accusations were first brought to light in the New York Daily News, which reported on Thursday that the New York Police Department and the Manhattan district attorney’s office were investigating the case.
Even though Newman had yet to be charged, the allegations were serious enough to bar him from continuing to work at Mount Sinai pending an outcome.
“We are aware of an allegation that has been made against one of our physicians,” the hospital said in a statement to the Daily News. “This is a matter under investigation and we are fully cooperating with the appropriate authorities. We take this matter very seriously and are conducting our own internal investigation.”
Mount Sinai officials told the Times on Tuesday that Newman has been suspended.
After news of the first incident surfaced, another woman reportedly came forward this past weekend with a similar account. A 22-year-old told police Saturday that she went to the hospital with a head cold in September and was groped by Newman for an extended period of time.
Newman’s attorney, John Wing, told NBC that Newman turned himself into police and volunteered a DNA sample.
“We plan on dealing with this in a responsible manner,” said Wing, adding that Newman is a “good man and excellent doctor” with a wife and two young children.
Newman also has received support from other medical professionals.
“I feel so bad for Dr. Newman being dragged through the mud on this,” physician David Cundiff told the Daily News.
A colleague of the physician’s wrote in an email to Jezebel:
There is no privacy in that ER. Period. Whoever is in the large rooms there divided by thin cotton curtains will hear exactly what’s going on. You hear more than you want to. Secondly, morphine doesn’t paralyze you. If you have enough to be too drugged to do anything, it means you are asleep — it’s not dissociative.
Newman is being kept in the Manhattan Detention Complex on $50,000 bail or $150,000 bond. He is scheduled to appear in court again Feb. 23.
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