BOSTON (CBS) – According to the Massachusetts Nurses Association, several female employees at Brigham and Women’s Hospital claim a doctor sexually harassed them and the I-Team has learned, one woman claims the doctor sexually assaulted her outside of an operating room.
The female staffer who says she was assaulted, went to court to ask for a Harassment Protection Order. During the hearing she told a judge that on September 15, 2017 Dr. Raymond Malapero III grabbed her buttocks near the operating room desk.
On court audio tapes obtained by the I-Team, the woman, who we are not identifying, told Judge Lisa Ann Grant, “I felt extremely unsafe.” She also said she didn’t know if he would try to touch her again.
In court, Malapero was questioned by his attorney. He denied the allegations and the sexual assault. However, speaking from the bench, Judge Grant ruled the woman made “a sufficient showing that she has suffered harassment and that there is a pattern.”
According to Trish Powers of the Massachusetts Nurses Association, women started coming forward about the harassment last year. “Three people came to me personally and two others, five in total that I am aware of,” she said. Powers explained that the claims involve sexual harassment, sexual assault and stalking.
It was the accusation of sexual assault that led Judge Grant to order Malapero, a fellow of cardiothoracic anesthesiology, to stay away from the woman when they are outside the hospital. After her ruling she said, “I think he’s on notice that his career is hanging in the balance here. I would expect that there would be no further problems.”
Judge Grant also ordered Malapero’s access at Brigham and Women’s be limited to two operating rooms and that he be required to use a locker room in another building.
During the hearing, Judge Grant also made note of the fact that Brigham and Women’s did not have anyone representing the hospital at the court hearing. She can be heard on the court recording saying, “It’s problematic that the hospital is not here. In light of current events around the country, one would think that an employer would be mindful that these issues could present them with a difficulty.”
In a statement, Brigham and Women’s Hospital said:
“Brigham and Women’s Hospital is committed to ensuring that every employee feels respected – free from harassment of any kind – in their work environment. Behaviors deemed intimidating, hostile or offensive are not tolerated. The hospital has a policy in place to ensure that complaints of sexual, verbal and physical harassment are thoroughly investigated and addressed. Anyone determined to be in violation of this policy is subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment.”
In court, Malapero’s attorney said his client had not been disciplined and remains on staff at the hospital.
Powers says that the women who came to the Nurses Union are afraid and that no one should be afraid to go to work. “Especially in a hospital. We are there to take care of patients. We’re not there to be harassed and we should be believed by the people that we trust,” she said.
We contacted Malapero’s attorney, David Meier who told us, “The hospital has carefully and thoroughly reviewed these claims and has determined them to be without merit. That is because they are without merit. I am confident that anybody who looks at the true facts will conclude the same thing. Dr. Malapero is an active member of the medical staff at Brigham & Women’s Hospital. He looks forward to a meaningful and productive career in medicine.”
Malapero is scheduled to remain at the hospital for the remainder of his training which ends on June 30th.