Todd Gavin, ophthalmologist, accused of having women get naked during eye exams
|Gavin's accusers came for an eye exam, but say they got way more than they bargained for.|
Todd Gavin, an ophthalmologist who used to practice at the Mankato Clinic but now works in Madelia, allegedly gave at least two women the most thorough eye exams ever in the summer of 2010.
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As a result, he's now on trial for two counts of felony fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct and two counts of gross misdemeanor fifth-degree criminal sexual conduct.
An October 2011 report from the Mankato Free Press' Dan Nienaber details the allegations that culminated in the criminal charges:
Two women contacted Mankato police in 2010 to report they had been sexually assaulted by Gavin during eye exams that May...Why stop at breast exams? Maybe Gavin's two patients were due for a trip to an OB/GYN as well.
One woman reported she was asked to remove her clothing during an exam to see if a shingles outbreak had harmed her eyes. The second woman reported Gavin had her bare her breasts and touched them after asking if she had received annual breast exams. That woman also said Gavin touched her lower abdomen and inner thigh after asking her to remove her pants.
A Free Press report from yesterday, the first day of Gavin' trial, makes clear that the alleged love doctor plans to fight the charges:
Assistant Blue Earth County Attorney Mike Hanson told jurors the issue is very simple.So, the mom told Gavin she wanted an "extra thorough" examination of her daughter? Sounds like the first scene of a Ron Jeremy film.
"What the defendant did," he said, referring the alleged victims, "was have them remove their clothing and examined their breasts for an eye exam."
He said both victims, when they left Gavin's exam room, felt violated.
"He sexually assaulted two women in the span of an hour," Hanson told the jury.
Gavin's attorney, Richard Ohlenberg of Minneapolis, said that what Hanson describes as predatory behavior was just Gavin being a good doctor.
He said one of the victims brought her mother along during exams, and the mother urged Gavin, Ohlenberg said, to be extra thorough.
Ohlenberg said Gavin asked one of the patients to take one of her three layers off, then turned back to a computer to enter some findings. When he turned back around, the woman had removed all layers except her bra.
"He was a little bit flabbergasted and discombobulated," Ohlenberg said.