Complaints against former RCMP doctors accused of sexual misconduct hit 80

Toronto doctor was allegedly particularly focused on women’s nipples during medical examinations

More than 80 complaints have now been received against two former RCMP doctors under investigation for alleged sexual misconduct spanning decades, police in Ontario and Nova Scotia say.

Toronto police have logged more than 20 complaints against a retired doctor in the Mounties’ Ontario division, while Halifax police have received “in excess of 60 complaints” against a former Nova Scotia doctor.

“These reports are still being investigated and no final decisions have been made on potential outcomes as yet,” Meaghan Gray of the Toronto Police Service said by email Monday. She added that it’s “still too early in the process” to say whether charges will be laid.

It is the first time Toronto police have revealed the number of complaints they have received, while Halifax police said Friday they had received about 50 complaints to that point.

The Toronto doctor was allegedly particularly focused on women’s nipples during medical examinations, while the Halifax doctor, nicknamed Dr. Fingers, has been accused of inappropriate and unnecessary vaginal and rectal examinations.

The force’s commanding officer in Nova Scotia, Assistant Commissioner Brian Brennan, said last week that ”a multiple of dozens” of women have brought forward allegations of incidents between October 1981 and July 2003 at the RCMP health services office in the Halifax suburb of Bedford.

READ MORE: RCMP recruits ‘deeply afraid’ to speak out about alleged sex abuse: Lawyer

READ MORE: ‘They gave me my life back’: RCMP member on harassment report

In a note to officers, he said he expects “many more” women to come forward in the months ahead.

“I am at a loss for words as I write this message to you. To say I’m shocked and disheartened doesn’t seem like enough,” Brennan wrote in the internal memo.

Assistant Commissioner Stephen White, the force’s acting chief human resources officer, said in an email to members that the allegations involved a doctor who conducted recruitment medical examinations and periodic health assessments on members.

The retired doctor declined to respond publicly on the allegations when reached last week.

The claims against the physicians mirror widespread complaints about sexual harassment in the national police force that led the federal court to approve a landmark settlement last spring.

Megan McPhee, a principal with a Toronto-based law firm serving as counsel in the class-action lawsuit, said last week that the physicians allegedly abused their power over vulnerable young recruits who were “deeply afraid” that speaking out would damage their careers in the RCMP.

“The issues we’re hearing with respect to the Halifax doctor are arising very early in the employment, when there is a potential power imbalance between a doctor and a woman who is trying to fulfil her dream of becoming an RCMP officer,” she said.

“Women simply don’t feel comfortable coming forward because they’re so deeply afraid of the impact that speaking out could have on their careers.”

The deadline for the uncapped class action settlement is Feb. 8.

Brett Bundale, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

City of Nanaimo wants conditions placed on any Discontent City extension

City wants to see nine conditions should the homeless camp remain after Friday’s court hearing

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: School squat hurt activists’ cause

Any support you people may have had I’m sure is now cut in half, says letter writer

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Freighters harm the ocean floor

Does anyone dive down and observe the destruction, asks letter writer

Nanaimo bluesman David Gogo releases new album, ‘17 Vultures’

Gogo currently touring in Ontario but will be back in Nanaimo for a CD release show next month

Candidates make their case to be part of Nanaimo’s next council

Select candidates’ debates held Monday at the Vancouver Island Conference Centre

VIDEO: First legal cannabis purchases as midnight strikes in eastern Canada

Newfoundland and Labrador was the first province to kick off the sale of cannabis, just after midnight local time

Candidate lists finalized for Nanaimo, Lantzville, RDN, school district

Nomination deadline passes in advance of Oct. 20 local government elections

Election 2018: candidate questionnaires

News Bulletin’s questionnaire responses for Nanaimo, Lantzville, school board, regional district

Nanaimo gets ready to rumble with Great B.C. Shake Out

Prepare for disaster drill by checking survival supplies and planning for real seismic event

Boeser tallies in OT as Canucks beat Penguins 3-2

Vancouver wins without star rookie Pettersson

Candidate wants to bring her experience back to the school board table

TerryLynn Saunders one of 20 candidates running for Nanaimo Ladysmith school trustee

Nanaimo council candidates talk about public consultation and branding the city

Chase River town hall candidates’ meeting was held Sunday afternoon

Mayor of Kamloops says ‘history has been made’ with vote on B.C.’s lone pot shop

The store to be run by the province in B.C.’s Interior is opening Wednesday as pot sales become legal across Canada

U.S. pot firm urges Trump to deny Canadian producers ‘competitive advantage’

The challenge for U.S. firms lies in the fact that while recreational cannabis is legal in nine states and medicinal pot in 22 others, it remains illegal under federal law

Most Read