NEW YORK - Accused of sexually abusing four female patients at Mount Sinai Hospital, a prominent New York doctor and Iraq War veteran was indicted Thursday.
David Newman, 45, director of clinical research in emergency medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital in Manhattan, was arrested in January and accused of drugging, groping and masturbating on a female patient, according to a criminal complaint, police said.
The indictment charges the former emergency room physician with one count of first-degree sexual abuse and four counts of third-degree sexual abuse, Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. said in a statement. The alleged abuse occurred from August 2015 to January 2016.
"As alleged in this indictment, four young women who came to the hospital for medical treatment were sexually abused by the very doctor entrusted with their care," Vance said. "One was sedated to the point of being physically helpless -- a nightmare scenario for any patient to endure."
The four patients Newman allegedly abused were from 18 to 29 years old, the prosecutor said.
In August, September and October, the doctor allegedly sexually abused three women who came to the emergency room for treatment of a headache, a cold and a rash, according to Lance. In January, it is alleged he sexually abused a female patient being treated for shoulder pain after sedating her with additional medication.
Newman's attorney, Susan Necheles, said, "As I said in court, he is innocent, and we intend to prove that at trial."
In a lawsuit filed last month, one of the accusers said DNA evidence will prove her allegations.
Necheles has said Newman denies the allegations in the lawsuit.
The civil lawsuit identified the accuser as Aja Newman, who is not related to the doctor.
Aja Newman went to the Mount Sinai emergency room with shoulder pain on the night of January 11, according to the lawsuit.
The lawsuit said David Newman gave the patient morphine even though "she had already been administered pain medication" and that -- "sedated, though conscious" -- she heard and saw the doctor masturbating and ejaculating on her face and breasts.
Aja Newman called police after leaving the emergency room, and DNA evidence collected later at Harlem Hospital Center matched that of the doctor, according to the lawsuit.
The lawsuit, which seeks unspecified monetary damages, names other emergency room staff it says "failed to enforce internal policies" and alleges the hospital "negligently" hired, trained, retained and supervised David Newman and others.
Newman was a major in the U.S. Army Reserves at a combat hospital in Baghdad.
Mount Sinai Hospital has said he is no longer employed there but declined further comment.
According to the criminal complaint, a 29-year-old patient in January told investigators the doctor gave her morphine even though she had already received a dose of the drug from a nurse.
The woman told investigators "she felt a burning sensation, felt very drowsy, and her eyes closed," the criminal complaint said. She told investigators she heard Newman masturbating and felt him ejaculating on her. She said she was unable to move or communicate, according to the complaint.
On September 22, Newman allegedly groped a 22-year-old woman who went to Mount Sinai Hospital with a cold, police said. Newman allegedly grabbed her breasts under her shirt, according to a criminal complaint.
Newman is the author of "Hippocrates' Shadow," which says the doctor "sees a lack of candid communication between doctors and patients, a disregard for the healing power of the doctor-patient bond ... and, ultimately, a disconnect between doctors and their Hippocratic Oath," according to the back cover. It was first published in 2008.