Therapist Accused of Raping 1 Patient, Sexual Misconduct With 2 Others
A prominent Albuquerque therapist has been indicted for allegedly raping a female patient in his office. Additionally, at least two other patients have come forward with allegations that the doctor used hypnosis for sexual reasons. Dr. Lamarr Edgerson was indicted on five counts of rape earlier this month.
According to police, Edgerson sexually assaulted a woman inside his business called Family Harmony in April 2017. The woman, who was one of Edgerson’s patients, says that the psychologist frequently put her under hypnosis. During one visit, she says she woke up from hypnosis and felt like Edgerson had performed oral sex on her.
The same woman also told police that in March, Edgerson picked her up from a bar to drive her home. Instead, she says, he took her to his house and raped her. She says that afterward, he sent several emails apologizing, but also asking for descriptions of sexual fantasies.
Edgerson has pleaded not guilty to the charges.
The other two women claim that Edgerson used hypnosis on them for inappropriate sexual conduct, including asking inappropriate sexual questions.
How The Legal System Can Help Victims of Doctor Sexual Assault
Attorney contributor Brian Kent of AbuseGuardian.com specializes in helping survivors of sexual assault find justice and financial compensation in civil court. Previously, he served as a sex crimes prosecutor in criminal courts. Here is Brian’s perspective on how the legal system can help survivors of sexual assault committed by medical professionals:
Therapy is all about trust, as patients make themselves vulnerable and reveal intimate details of their lives in an effort to improve their mental health. While most therapists are trustworthy professionals, a small number are sexual predators who exploit their positions of trust and sexually abuse their patients. When this happens, victims can find a sense of justice in both criminal and civil courts.
The prosecution of these predators is crucial, as it can help provide a sense of relief for victims and protect others from suffering sexual violence committed by the perpetrator in the future. While the criminal justice system handles the prosecution, civil courts help victims directly by providing financial compensation. Additionally, a civil lawsuit can demand accountability from third parties who enabled or failed to prevent abuse, such as the perpetrator’s employer. In many cases, victims have grounds to file lawsuits against the perpetrator and their employer (such as a medical facility).
If you or a loved one has been sexually assaulted by a medical professional, you can learn more about your legal options by speaking to an experienced sexual assault survivors attorney.