Delaware mother and daughter sue former doctor for sexual assault

A Delaware mother and daughter claiming to be victims of a Newark doctor who’s already been accused of sexual misconduct filed a civil lawsuit Monday morning.

The doctor in question is Pierre Leroy. He’s already been indicted in connection on another charge of unlawful sexual content. The announcement of the civil suit is not connected to that case.  Attorney Raeann Warner of  Jacobs and Crumplar made the announcement in her Wilmington law office as she stood alongside 48-year old Carla Pennington and her 26-year old daughter, Amanda Bendler, who covered her face during a press conference at the law firm’s Wilmington office. 

Pennington and Bendler say they were assaulted in March of 2011 nearly a year before a complaint from a 35-year old patient of Leroy’s which sparked the spring investigation into his medical practice.  “It’s is unfortunate that this doctor used his position of power and authority to prey on vulnerable female patients for many years, but these plaintiffs are bravely coming forward to seek justice,” said attorney Warner.

During the news conference, the attorney said Pennington alleges she was touched, kissed and asked to remove her clothes during an appointment with Leroy.  Warner went on to say Pennington also referred her daughter, Bendler, to Leroy for treatment of an unexplained rash.  Warner said after Bendler’s visit she made similar claims of unwarranted sexual advancement, but does not mention anything about being kissed. 

  • WHYY thanks our sponsors — become a WHYY sponsor

Warner, the plaintiffs’ attorney says both women were ashamed and intimidated by the 84 year old neurosurgeon. However, the pair eventually decided to come forward after learning about other victims who reported the crime in May and June of this year.  

Since those reports, Dr. Pierre Leroy has been indicted on 20 counts of sexual assault charges after a joint investigation with the Attorney General’s Office and the Division of Professional Regulations. Although  Pennington and Bendler have yet to file a complaint with police, the number of alleged sex abuse victims at this time totals six.

Pierre is also accused of violating a permanent license restriction barring him from treating a female patient without having an appropriate female chaperon present.

Pennington and Bendler’s civil lawsuit was filed in Kent County in an attempt to avoid a case which could feature a jury with those who may be familiar with Dr. Leroy and his New Castle County practice.

Dr. Leroy’s medical license continues to be suspended during the ongoing investigation.

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

Together we can reach 100% of WHYY’s fiscal year goal