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Sex assault trial of Wis. pediatrician opens

  • Associated Press
  • January 21, 2014 - 7:15 PM

SUPERIOR, Wis. — A prosecutor told jurors Tuesday that a Wisconsin pediatrician accused of sexual assault had no medical reason to touch the 15 male juvenile patients' genitals, while the defense argued that the boys misconstrued what the doctor was doing during exams.

The trial of Dr. David Van de Loo of Eau Claire was moved to Superior because of local media coverage and the doctor's prominence in the community. The 61-year-old faces 16 sexual assault-related felony charges.

Eau Claire County District Attorney Gary King said during his opening statement that, "this case is about 15 kids who came forward and disclosed what happened to them when they were alone in an exam room with Dr. Van de Loo."

The 15 boys "didn't have any concerns for their penises or genitals, they didn't ask the doctor to touch them and there was no medical evidence for him to touch them the way he did," King said.

Defense attorney Rich White argued that testimony will show Van de Loo "was performing legitimate medical procedures that were sensitive to adolescents but were never, ever sexually based."

Van de Loo "is a perfectionist so driven to resolve the problems of his patients," White said. "There was nothing sexual about it."

Van de loo's actions during exams were misconstrued by patients, White said.

Witness testimony is scheduled to begin Wednesday, the Leader-Telegram (http://bit.ly/1ikUy5K ) reported, and as many as 83 potential witnesses could be called.

The longtime adolescent and sports medicine specialist at Mayo Clinic Health System in Eau Claire was fired on Sept. 12, 2012, after allegations of sexual assault surfaced.

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