LOS ANGELES – The physician-son of Bermuda's former leader sexually assaulted 12 of his female patients, including an undercover vice officer, using the guise of unnecessary breast and pelvic checkups, a prosecutor said Monday.
Kevin Antario Brown, 40, is accused of fondling some of his patients while he examined them in his office. He has pleaded not guilty to 33 felony counts, ranging from sexual exploitation to forcible rape.
Prosecutor Ann Marie Wise told jurors in her opening statement that they will hear from the women, most of whom stepped forward after Brown's arrest in 2008. Wise said many of the women were scared to tell anyone about what had happened because it was their word against that of a respected doctor.
"They had a duty that this man did not do this to anyone else," she said.
Wise said Brown often flirted with his female patients, asked some of them out on dates and improperly touched them. One woman claims Brown raped her; another claims Brown slapped her rear end while she was bent over and asked, "Who's hittin' that?" Wise said.
Wise said Brown's behavior came to a halt after an undercover vice officer, complaining of an ankle injury, visited Brown in June 2008 where the doctor lifted her shirt and bra and began fondling her breast. The incident was captured on an audio recorder, Wise said.
Brown, a family practitioner, has been acquitted twice in 2004 and 2006 of similar charges, Wise said.
Defense attorney Edi Faal contends the officer lied about what happened because nowhere on the audio tape does the woman protest about what supposedly happened. Faal also added the officer forgot to turn off the recorder and she's heard on the tape telling her colleagues after the office visit, "Next time he will bite."
"She told them a lie, an outright lie," Faal said.
None of the other women alerted any of Brown's staff to what was allegedly occurring, Faal said.
Dominique H. was the first woman to testify Monday and said Brown touched her breast in a caressing motion and then placed his hand into her pants, asking her if she could keep a secret.
"I said, 'What do you mean keep a secret?'" she recalled asking Brown. "He heard the tone in my voice changed, then he said, 'Oh I knew you couldn't keep a secret.'"
Brown is the son of Ewart Brown, who stepped down as Bermuda's premier late last year. He has been free on $4 million bail. He could face up to life in prison if convicted on all of them.