NorthShore Gynecologist Arrested 18 Months After Sexual Assault Allegations
A gynecologist with the NorthShore University Medical Group was arrested last month on allegations that he sexually assaulted a patient. This arrest came more than 18 months after a woman reported that 72-year-old Fabio Ortega had sexually assaulted her during an appointment on February 2, 2017. Ortega was indicted in August and his medical license was suspended following his arrest in September.
On September 10, Ortega was arrested and charged with one count of criminal sexual assault. His license was suspended one week later.
According to police reports, Ortega touched a patient inappropriately during an appointment and made several sexual comments towards her.
While investigating these allegations against Ortega, Skokie detectives discovered that he had been named in another complaint filed with the Department of Financial and Professional Regulation for inappropriate behavior towards a patient. In 2013, another woman told investigators that Dr. Ortega called her cell phone late at night and asked sexual questions.
Legal Recourse For Survivors of Sexual Assault by Doctors
Attorney contributor Brian Kent of AbuseGuardian.com helps the survivors of sexual assault find justice, answers, and financial support. We have asked him to add some general information on the legal options available to survivors:
Doctors, nurses, and other medical professionals are some of the most trusted members of our communities. We trust them to provide us with the highest standard of medical care possible, and to conduct themselves respectfully in interactions with their patients. But unfortunately, cases of doctors and other medical professionals exploiting their positions of trust to sexually abuse patients have become somewhat common.
Sexual assault is a heinous crime regardless of the perpetrator, but sexual assault committed by trusted medical professionals can prevent the victim from ever feeling comfortable in a medical facility again. It’s important to make sure the doctors who violate their patients’ trust this way are held criminally responsible. Additionally, it’s important for victims to consider their legal options through the civil court system, as doctors and medical facilities can be held liable when negligence results in a failure to prevent sexual assault.
If you or someone you love has been sexually assaulted by a medical professional and you’d like to learn more about how the legal system can help, we advise discussing your case with an experienced sexual assault survivors lawyer.