NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. (KABC) -- A Newport Beach doctor who specializes in treating members of the LGBTQ+ community has been charged with sexually assaulting nine male patients under the guise of medical examinations, prosecutors announced Tuesday.
Dr. William Thompson IV, 56, of Huntington Beach, was charged Sept. 21 with eight felony counts of sexual penetration by means of fraudulent representation of professional purpose, three felony counts of sexual battery by fraud, and two felony counts of forcible oral copulation.
"After learning medical procedures being performed on them by Thompson were not medically necessary, six of Thompson's patients disclosed that they had been sexually assaulted by Thompson," the Orange County District Attorney's Office said in a statement.
He is free on $100,000 bond and is scheduled to be arraigned Nov. 2 in Newport Beach, prosecutors said.
The alleged assaults occurred between 2016 and 2020. Thompson was arrested Sept. 20 at his medical practice.
He faces a maximum sentence of 30 years to life in prison, plus an additional 25 years if convicted as charged, according to the District Attorney's Office.
One patient of Dr. Thompson spoke to Eyewitness News.
"My heart dropped," the patient, who asked to remain anonymous, said. "It just makes me question everything about our interactions since 2017."
The 33 year old said he's visited with the doctor every 3 to 6 months for the last six years.
"I thought some of the things that he would do during the physical exam was part of the physical exam and just thinking back to those times I should have known better. I should have questioned some things," the patient said.
The Medical Board of California said they are aware of allegations against Dr. Thompson and are looking into the matter.
His medical license remain active with no restrictions.
The patient we spoke with said he's reached out to investigators and wants to help out anyway he can.
He said, "I feel like my trust I had in him has been violated. I feel like my body has been violated by somebody that I trusted."
In April 2021, Thompson was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence, prosecutors said. Thompson, who had a blood alcohol content of .38 when he was arrested at 9:30 a.m., pleaded guilty to one misdemeanor count of DUI and one misdemeanor count of DUI with a blood alcohol content of more than .08%.
"Many of Dr. Thompson's patients depended on him to provide life-saving care and he exploited those vulnerabilities for his own sexual gratification," Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer said. "Unfortunately, because of his specialized area of practice, Dr. Thompson put the very patients he was supposed to treat with professionalism and dignity, in a situation where they may have felt they had no other choice but to be subjected to sexual abuse in order to receive the treatment they needed to continue to live."
Anyone with information about the case is asked to call the Newport Beach Police Department at (949) 644-3682. Anonymous tips can also be made to (800) 550-6273.