Bethesda nurse accused of sexual assault

BOYNTON BEACH, FL (WFLX) - Bethesda Memorial Hospital in Boynton Beach is at the center of a sex abuse investigation.

A former patient claims a male nurse sexually assaulted her in her hospital bed. A lawsuit is now filed against the hospital, claiming negligence.

The alleged victim says she was being treated for dehydration in early September when she awoke one morning with the nurse on top of her, sexually assaulting her.  

"I was taken advantage of sexually by a nurse who I trusted had my best interest in mind," said the woman. "I'm concerned this was not the first time this nurse violated a patient. There's no doubt in my mind if he's not stopped now he'll hurt someone else."

The woman claims she awoke to a male nurse on top of her, fondling her breasts and stomach. She reportedly told him to stop.

"He jumped back and said, 'Let me get more Phenergan,' and left. She whipped out the IV and told the nurses she'd been sexually assaulted by this male nurse," said the woman's attorney Jeff Herman.

The alleged victim is now suing the hospital for negligence, saying little was done once she reported the incident.

Boynton Beach police are investigating. A spokeswoman for the hospital said the staff was unaware of the lawsuit, and can't comment on the case. The name of the suspected male nurse is not being released because no criminal charges have been filed against him.

The case has been sent to the State Attorney's office.

"The best way to protect the vulnerable population is to expose predators and institutions that are protecting them," said Herman.

The suspect named in the lawsuit is 55 years old. The police report shows he has only been working at Bethesda Memorial Hospital for a few months. He is a licensed nurse, and has no criminal history in Palm Beach County.

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