Author: Eva Fedderly
A man claims he was sexually assaulted by a physician at a federal health clinic and claims the United States is responsible for negligence in hiring and retaining him at the facility.
In a complaint filed in the Atlanta Federal Court, the Plaintiff says he visited the Marietta, Georgia office of the Family Health Centers of Georgia on August 29, 2012, for a routine medical exam.
According to the June 24 complaint, the Family Health Centers provide medical treatment and health care with federal support and funding.
the Plaintiff says while at the facility he was left alone with Dr. Lewis Jackson who, he claims, had a “history of mistreating patients that was known or should have been known to Defendant [United States] and Family Health Centers.”
“During the course of this examination, Jackson grabbed Plaintiff inappropriately without Plaintiff’s consent and against his will. Plaintiff ultimately stopped this unwanted encounter by Jackson by pushing him away and leaving the Family Health Centers premises,” the complaint states.
the Plaintiff says he reported the incident to the local police that same day and has since “suffered profound trauma and damages as a result of Jackson’s mistreatment.”
“Plaintiff was sexually abused as a child, struggles with mental health issues, and was therefore particularly vulnerable to trauma as a result of the type of mistreatment visited upon him by Jackson,” the complaint says.
the Plaintiff claims Jackson was fired from his job at an Atlanta federal prison in July 2012, for engaging “in similar mistreatment of incarcerated patients.” “Indeed, Jackson was terminated for cause from his duties as a physician for Defendant after sexually assaulting three inmate patients at the USP in Atlanta in September and October of 2011. Jackson also sexually assaulted inmates at a federal penitentiary in Washington, D.C. in 2008,” the complaint states.
the Plaintiff’s attorney, Jason Nohr, of Cauthorn Nohr & Owen, told Courthouse News, “I’m not going to call the government an enabler, but they put this sexual predator [Jackson] in the presence of this man [the Plaintiff] seeking healthcare, despite Jackson’s long history of abusing patients, which they not only knew about but fired him for.
“He was fired and then almost immediately hired at the family health center, which is under the umbrella of the United States,” Nohr said.
the Plaintiff seeks compensatory and punitive damages on claims of negligent hiring and retention; negligent failure to report Jackson’s misconduct; and for general and special damages.
“What is interesting and unique about this case is that the US is on both sides of the employment equation here,” Nohr said. “In other words, they fired this doctor for his misconduct with patients and then both allowed him to be rehired and then essentially rehired him as a physician and put him in a position to abuse additional patients, including the Plaintiff. What’s unique and doubly egregious is they could have prevented this by doing what they were supposed to have done when they learned about what Jackson was doing and investigated him before rehiring him.”
A representative at the Family Health Center told Courthouse News they are not allowed to comment on pending litigation.