Johns Hopkins to pay $190 million to settle suits over pelvic exam photos
A “rogue” gynecologist’s secret use of tiny cameras to record hundreds of videos and photos of his patients’ sex organs has led to a $190 million settlement with about 8,000 women and girls, lawyers said last week.
Dr. Nikita Levy was fired after 25 years with Johns Hopkins Health System in Baltimore in February 2013 after a female co-worker alerted authorities about a pen-like camera he wore around his neck.
He committed suicide days later, as a federal investigation led to roughly 1,200 videos and 140 images stored on computers in his home.
“All of these women were brutalized by this,” said their lead attorney, Jonathan Schochor. “Some of these women needed counseling, they were sleepless, they were dysfunctional in the workplace, they were dysfunctional at home, they were dysfunctional with their mates. This breach of trust, this betrayal—this is how they felt.”
The preliminary settlement approved by a judge is one of the largest on record in the U.S. involving sexual misconduct by a physician. It all but closes a case that never produced criminal charges but seriously threatened the reputation of the prominent medical center.
Johns Hopkins said insurance will cover the settlement, which “properly balances the concerns of thousands of plaintiffs with obligations the health system has to provide ongoing and superior care to the community.”