Doctor accused of abusing 19 patients - CBS 5 - KPHO

Doctor accused of abusing 19 patients

MESA, AZ (CBS5) -

The abuse case against a Mesa doctor keeps getting bigger and bigger.

A Maricopa County Grand Jury has handed up a 61-count indictment against Dr. Richard Lewis.

County Attorney Andrew Thomas said Lewis is accused of inappropriately fondling 18 of his patients.

One patient claims Lewis sexually assaulted her, Thomas said.

The 53-year-old cardiologist was originally arrested in June, 2009, by Mesa police, for claims made by two patients. Since that time, many other women have come forward and expanded the investigation.

The women allege similar conduct by Lewis going back to 2004. The County Attorney's Office reviewed these allegations and police reports before seeking charges.

Lewis worked at Advanced Cardiac Services of Mesa. The facility terminated Lewis shortly after his arrest. Lewis has been out on bail and is being monitored by an electronic ankle bracelet.

The indictment lists one count of sexual assault, a Class 2 felony; 46 counts of sexual abuse, Class 5 felonies; and 14 counts of assault, class 3 misdemeanors.

The indictment alleges the crimes took place between December 2004 and June 2009 and claims 19 women were victimized. Deputy County Attorney Erin Otis is prosecuting the case.

Thomas stated, "Patients who seek treatment from medical professionals are especially vulnerable and have a right to receive proper care. The women who came forward and reported these matters to law enforcement deserve our respect and our gratitude for the courage they displayed."

Lewis entered into an agreement to temporarily suspend his medical license in the state of Arizona.
Police said it's possible there may be other alleged victims who have not reported similar events. The department asks people with information contact the Mesa Police Department at 480-644-2211. 

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