Indian Doctor Pleads Guilty to Sex Offence in Ohio
Arun Aggarwal, a former doctor with Dayton Children’s Hospital in Ohio, has agreed to return to India.
An Indian pediatric gastroenterologist, Arun Aggarwal, pleaded guilty to four counts of gross sexual imposition in Ohio. He had earlier pleaded not guilty to the allegations of improperly touching the breasts of two teenage female patients.
“Between Dec. 23, 2013, and Nov. 10, 2014, the defendant, a pediatric gastroenterologist at Dayton Children’s Hospital, inappropriately touched teens during medical examinations. The inappropriate touching was not a medically necessary part of the examination,” Montgomery County prosecutor Mat Heck said in a statement.
Montgomery County Common Pleas Judge Mary Wiseman gave Aggarwal a 10-month sentence on Dec. 21, 2017, of which he has served four months during the trial in the Montgomery County Jail, on a $500,000 bond. He will be registered as a sex offender if he resides in Ohio. However, the doctor is on a work visa and has agreed to return to India.
“This gives him certainty and ends a very difficult saga in his life and he’s eager to get back to India and move ahead,” Samuel Shamansky, Aggarwal’s attorney, said, according to NewsIndiaTimes.
Aggarwal will be treated as a Tier-1 offender i.e. if he stays in the United States he will not be permitted to live within 1,000 feet of a school, preschool or daycare. He will also have to register his address every year for the next 15 years.
The 40-year-old doctor was arrested on Aug. 18 at Dulles International Airport in Washington, D.C., where he had flown in from Cleveland, Ohio, to catch a connecting flight to India.
After Aggarwal was indicted, Dayton Children’s Hospital issued a statement saying, “We are deeply saddened by this situation and, as we have throughout the investigation, fully support the efforts of the officers and prosecutors in their thorough and intensive investigation. The safety of our patients is our top priority. We want to assure parents that we will not tolerate any actions which could impact our quality of care or breach the trust placed in us by patients, parents and the community.”
However, the hospital was criticized for failure on its part to report the incident. The initial investigation against Aggarwal began in 2015 after two teenagers reported against him.
“While the hospital was cooperative during the investigation and prosecution of the defendant, it is still very concerning that doctors who learned of the allegations against him by his patients never reported the matter to the police or Children Services,” Assistant County Prosecutor Leon Daidone said. However, the other physicians will not be charged for not reporting the incident.