NEW YORK – A sportscaster-turned-sports medicine doctor admitted Tuesday he inappropriately touched a 14-year-old girl during an encounter in his apartment three years ago.
Dr. Marvell Scott pleaded guilty Tuesday to a misdemeanor charge of endangering the welfare of a child. He said he learned her age only after the encounter.
His case will be closed without jail time or probation if he does 20 days of community service.
Scott, 38, initially also faced rape and prostitution charges after his June 2008 encounter with the girl, whom prosecutors had said was a runaway who was working as a prostitute. Scott's lawyers, Benjamin Brafman and John D. Pappalardo, emphasized that he admitted to nothing but the child endangerment count.
"Mr. Scott has maintained from the very start of this case that he did not commit the serious crime he was originally charged with," they said in a statement.
The Manhattan District Attorney's office declined to comment on Scott's plea deal.
A former running back at the University of Illinois and the University of Delaware, Scott became interested in medicine after suffering a serious injury in high school, according to an online bio on the website of a chiropractic and sports-medicine center where he now works.
He went to medical school while working as a sports reporter for WDTN-TV in Dayton, Ohio; played for a time for the Dayton Skyhawks, a professional indoor football team; and then worked as a weekend sportscaster for New York's WABC-TV for seven years before leaving in the summer of 2009 to pursue his sports-medicine career. He was indicted in the case involving the teen in February 2010.
His lawyers said they didn't expect Scott's plea to affect his medical license. Under state law, a criminal conviction can affect a physician's license, but the Office of Professional Medical Conduct said it doesn't discuss whether or not it is reviewing any given physician's status.
When Scott was indicted, prosecutors said he had met a man and two girls, then 14 and 16, near Times Square after the girls ran away from school. Prosecutors said Scott paid the man, took the girls to the apartment and had sex with the younger one.
She later returned to her upstate New York home, prosecutors said.