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A Minnesota doctor has been accused of sexually assaulting a female patient after asking to check her “bum,” charging documents show.
Javaid Saleem, a former physician at North Memorial Health Clinic in Maple Grove, was charged via summons Tuesday with fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct for allegedly sexually assaulting a woman who saw him for abdominal issues in May 2020, the Star Tribune reported.
The woman told Maple Grove police last spring she first saw Saleem the previous week and allegedly wanted to perform a rectal exam on her — despite her having no issues with her bowel movements, according to a criminal complaint obtained by the newspaper.
Saleem, 55, who practices obstetrics, pediatrics and family medicine, gave the woman a prescription and told her to see a gastrointestinal specialist.
But she was unable to get an appointment and couldn’t afford the expensive medicine, so she scheduled a second visit with the doctor in hopes of getting a generic drug replacement, the woman told police.
Saleem then allegedly told the woman he wanted to check her “bum” during the follow-up visit — a procedure she questioned initially but ultimately consented to, according to the complaint.
Saleem then asked the woman to partly undress before sexually assaulting her, the complaint states. The woman told authorities she later saw the doctor typing on a computer with one of his hands hidden beneath his coat near his groin, the Star Tribune reported.
Saleem did not say anything about his findings during the penetrative exam on May 15, 2020, according to the charges filed in Hennepin County. The woman notified cops of the allegations the same day and investigators responded to the clinic, WCCO reported.
Saleem allegedly provided a statement later indicating he found a mass while examining the woman, but her medical records showed no notes about it, the Star Tribune reported.
Saleem, who was placed on administrative leave last May, was fired Tuesday by North Memorial Health, his employer since 2007, according to his LinkedIn page.
“North Memorial Health has cooperated with police throughout the investigation of the alleged incident,” officials said in a statement to WCCO. “We do not comment on the details of open cases or active litigation. What we can tell you is patient safety is our top priority at North Memorial Health and we are deeply committed to providing a safe environment for our customers and team.”
Saleem declined to comment Tuesday, but his attorney told the Star Tribune that he “categorically denies” the accusations.
Maple Grove police, meanwhile, reportedly declined to comment on whether there were any other active investigations into Saleem’s conduct.
“If there were other active investigations against the doctor, we would not release that information because it would be confidential and part of an active investigation,” Maple Grove police Commander Jon Wetternach told the Tribune.
Saleem could face up to 10 years in prison if convicted, WCCO reported.
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