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Women testify at trial of former Bluffton doctor

LIMA — One woman refused to look toward the doctor she has accused of sexually assaulting her, during the doctor’s trial Thursday in Lima Municipal Court.
Six women have testified at the trial of James Gideon, a former Bluffton doctor accused of six misdemeanor charges of sexual imposition.
Gideon is a former rheumatologist and he was treating the women for pain. His medical license was suspended by the state last year.
One female testified Thursday that her appointment with Gideon was scheduled after his office had closed for the day. She said Gideon told her to take off her jacket and T-shirt. He lightly rubbed her back, she said, and she could feel callouses on his fingertips. When he moved his hand to her stomach, she said she pushed him away. He also rubbed her right buttock “softly and intimately,” she said.
At no point did Gideon tell her what he planned to do, she said.
She became emotional during Thursday’s testimony and had to stop to compose herself. When the prosecutor asked her to point out Gideon in the courtroom, the woman grimaced before identifying him as the one sitting in a navy suit and blue striped tie.
Defense attorney Dennis Belli asked the woman about some rings Gideon had given her that he had asked her to put up for sale in her shop. The woman testified she had not sold the rings, nor had she returned them.
Another woman testified Thursday that Gideon told her, “I cleared my afternoon schedule for you,” and lifted her shirt without asking. He also cut out the underwire for her bra without asking, she said. She said she had gone to the doctor for pain in her wrists, ankles, knees, back and neck.
A third woman testified that Gideon hugged her while she was topless and did not tell her he needed to touch her in an intimate way.
She said she reported the incident because “when someone violates you, that’s what you’re supposed to do.”
“The whole thing was uncomfortable and weird and hard to describe in that way,” she said.
Police officers and an Ohio Medical Board investigator were set to testify as well on Thursday.
The trial will resume Friday morning.

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