Crime & Courts

Patients, friends defend Charlotte doctor accused of sexually assaulting patients

Standing outside the east Charlotte medical practice where Dr. Fidelis Edosomwan is accused of sexually assaulting patients, family members and friends told the community the doctor is not the sexual predator he had been portrayed as since his arrest.

Edosomwan, 52, of Waxhaw, was charged Jan. 30 with sexual offense and sexual battery. After announcing the charges in February, police urged other potential victims to come forward. Police said 40 more reports were filed against Edosomwan since then, alleging that assaults had occurred during examinations.

Police said they identified 34 alleged victims.

But people close to Edosomwan painted a different portrait of the doctor – a man who prayed with people who came to him for medical help and who helped poor patients pay for medicine. More than two dozen people gathered in Edosomwan’s defense at Americare Health, where Milton Road meets The Plaza. Most of the people who spoke on Edosomwan’s behalf are women.

“I have never ever seen him ... less than respectful to every person that came into that office,” said Martha Grant, who was an intern at the practice from October to December. “He is not the monster that he has been made out to be.”

Vivian Bailey, a nurse at the practice, said she sat in with Edosomwan during many consultations and believes the allegations are false.

“I have been with him in the room with patients and he’s always been very professional,” Bailey said. “I’ve worked with him side by side. ... Dr. Edosomwan would never do anything to harm his patients. He would never touch a lady the wrong way.”

Through his lawyer, Edosomwan has denied all the charges against him. His lawyer, George Laughrun, said Edosomwan is self-employed, and that he entered into a consent decree with the state medical board not to practice medicine while the charges are pending.

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Twitter: @CleveWootson