Doctor accused of sexually assaulting patients who relied on him for ‘life-saving care’
A California infectious disease doctor specializing in LGBTQ+ clients allegedly sexually assaulted at least nine of his patients “under the guise that the assaults were part of necessary medical exams,” the Orange County District Attorney’s Office said.
Dr. William Thompson IV, 56, was arrested at his Newport Beach practice last Wednesday – he faces eight counts of sexual penetration by means of fraudulent representation of professional purpose, three counts of sexual battery by fraud and two felony counts of forcible oral copulation, according to a press release issued by the DA’s office on Tuesday.
Six of Thompson’s patients disclosed that they had been sexually assaulted after learning that “tests” they had undergone between 2016 and 2020 were not medically necessary, according to the release.
Among the bogus procedures were unnecessary anal exams and “forcing a male patient to orally copulate him,” the release said.
Three more victims would be discovered in the subsequent “exhaustive investigation,” Newport Beach Police Chief Joe Cartwright said.
“Many of Dr. Thompson’s patients depended on him to provide life-saving care and he exploited those vulnerabilities for his own sexual gratification,” Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer wrote. “Unfortunately, because of his specialized area of practice, Dr. Thompson put the very patients he was supposed to treat with professionalism and dignity, in a situation where they may have felt they had no other choice but to be subjected to sexual abuse in order to receive the treatment they needed to continue to live.”
“A doctor’s office should be a place where patients can safely share their most personal vulnerabilities without having to fear they will be preyed upon by a sexual predator,” Spitzer continued. “No one should be violated in such a shameful way by someone who has taken an oath to protect their patients.”
If convicted on all counts against him, Thompson would face 30 years to life plus 25 years, the press release stated. He has since bonded out on $100,000 bail and is scheduled to appear at the Harbor Justice Center in Newport Beach for arraignment on November 2.
It was unclear whether Thompson has retained an attorney. Fox News Digital could not reach the doctor directly for comment at press time.
A police investigation is still underway, with officials urging additional victims to come forward.
According to his profile on patientfusion.com, which has remained online as his online footprint has receded, Thompson “went to medical school” at the Autonomous University of Guadalajara Faculty Medicine “to care for HIV patients, who were historically discriminated against.”
“I fell in love with all of infectious diseases,” the doctor wrote. “I also do primary care for men. We have a warm and safe place for patients.”
Thompson pleaded guilty to unrelated misdemeanor charges for driving under the influence after a 9:30 a.m. arrest in April 2021, the district attorney noted, during which the doctor clocked in a .38% blood alcohol content.