A class action settlement is pending regarding allegations against the University of Southern California (USC) and Dr. George M. Tyndall. Once approved, the class action settlement resolves the claims of women included in the class action lawsuit against Dr. Tyndall for sexual assault while they were students at USC. However, the class action lawsuit does not include claims against a second USC doctor of sexually assaulting numerous men during medical exams. It is important that men understand that the class action lawsuit against Dr. Tyndall and USC does NOT bar them from filing claims against Dr. Dennis Kelly. The claims against Dr. Kelly are separate and apart from any sexual assault or sexual abuse claims that female patients may have against the school’s former gynecologist.
The full extent of Dr. Kelly’s misconduct and wrongdoing is unknown. The allegations of sexual assault by dozens of former male patients continue to be investigated. If you were a patient of Dr. Dennis Kelly while attending USC or UCLA, you might have a valid claim against the doctor for sexual abuse or sexual assault.
Get Help From a California Sexual Assault Attorney
The California sexual assault attorneys of The Thompson Law Office are accepting cases involving claims of sexual abuse by Dr. Kelly. Contact our office for a free consultation by calling 1-650-513-6111. We are here to answer your questions and concerns as well as provide legal advice, guidance, and support.
To help you understand more about this case and your legal rights regarding a sexual assault claim against Dr. Kelly, our California sexual assault attorney covers these topics in this article:
- What are the allegations against Dr. Dennis Kelly?
- Is the University of Southern California responsible for the sexual abuse by Dr. Kelly?
- What is the deadline for filing lawsuits against USC and Dr. Kelly for sexual assault?
- What should I do if I was sexually assaulted or sexually harassed by Dr. Kelly?
- What will I receive if I file a civil lawsuit against Dr. Kelly and USC?
What are the allegations against Dr. Dennis Kelly?
Dozens of male students have come forward alleging various acts of sexual assault, sexual battery, and sexual harassment by Dr. Kelly during his time at USC and UCLA. Dr. Kelly likely treated thousands of patients during his two decades at the campus health clinic. Therefore, there could be many more former students who were abused, assaulted, or harassed by Dr. Kelly when they sought treatment at the campus clinic.
The allegations against Dr. Kelly are disturbing, and the accounts given by some of the former students are chilling. Former patients of Dr. Kelly have alleged that he sexually assaulted or harassed them during appointments by committing one or more of the following acts:
- Watching male patients as they undressed.
- Refusing to allow male patients to cover themselves during the examination or wear a robe.
- Performing unnecessary and intrusive rectal examinations.
- Using derogatory and demeaning language when discussing bisexual or gay patients.
- Making inappropriate remarks or comments during a patient’s examination about the patient’s sexual activities, body, or sexual orientation.
- Humiliating and shaming men for choosing to engage in sexual acts with male partners.
It is also alleged that the doctor did not subject straight male students to the same examinations, questions, or comments. It appears that Dr. Kelly targeted bisexual and gay men for sexual abuse and sexual harassment. Therefore, there could also be an element of discrimination to the sexual assault charges. Additional allegations may come to light as more former male patients of Dr. Kelly come forward to allege wrongdoing and sexual assault.
Dr. Kelly worked at the USC health clinic for approximately 20 years. He retired in 2018 at the age of 72. The doctor denies any wrongdoing and allegations of sexual assault, harassment, or abuse. He is not facing any criminal charges at this time, but that does not prevent former male patients from filing civil claims against the doctor seeking compensation for damages.
Is the University of Southern California responsible for the sexual abuse by Dr. Kelly?
Several former male students allege that they reported their concerns to USC, but that the university did nothing to address the allegations of wrongdoing or sexual abuse. The male students allege that USC deliberately failed to respond to their complaints, failed to investigate the complaints, and failed to adequately address or reprimand Dr. Kelly for his behavior. Instead, the school continued to employ the doctor and allow him to treat gay and bisexual male patients. They are alleging that the university is guilty of several causes of action, including negligent supervision and negligent hiring.
If the allegations prove to be true, USC could potentially be held liable for damages caused by their failure to address the complaints. Some students allege that USC concealed claims of sexual abuse against Dr. Kelly. As in the class action lawsuit filed against the school and Dr. Tyndall, USC could have potential liability for its failure to act when students filed complaints alleging sexual assault, harassment, and other wrongdoing committed by one of its employees.
What is the deadline for filing lawsuits against USC and Dr. Kelly for sexual assault?
On October 2, 2019, Gov. Newsom signed Assembly Bill 1510 (AB1510) into law. The law extends the statute of limitations in some sexual abuse and sexual assault cases to allow former students additional time to file claims against campus doctors and universities. However, the deadline for filing claims under the extension is fast approaching.
AB 1510 extends the time to file civil lawsuits seeking damages for sexual assault or sexual abuse until December 31, 2020, for some cases. The bill applies to cases involving more than $250,000 in damages arising between January 1, 1988, and January 1, 2017. The cases must involve allegations of inappropriate activity, sexual misconduct, inappropriate contact, or inappropriate communication with a student health center physician during that time.
It is important for victims of sexual assault or other wrongdoing to talk to a California sexual assault attorney as soon as possible. The above bill is only one law related to the statute of limitations for sexual assault cases in California. Several laws could restrict or expand the time some victims have to file civil lawsuits related to sexual abuse, assault, harassment, or battery. An experienced attorney can determine whether the time to file a claim has expired.
What should I do if Dr. Kelly sexually assaulted or sexually harassed me?
If you believe that you were sexually assaulted or sexually harassed by Dr. Kelly, you need to act now. It can be extremely difficult to come forward to discuss allegations of sexual assault and sexual harassment. For some individuals, the memories are extremely painful and difficult to deal with.
Reports have stated that some students may have been as young as 18 years of age and just coming to terms with their sexual orientation at the time of the sexual assault and harassment by Dr. Kelly. Many of the men allege gender violence and sexual harassment in addition to allegations of sexual assault or sexual battery.
However, the time to file civil lawsuits against Dr. Kelly and USC is restricted by law. Even though you might have until December 31, 2020, to file a civil lawsuit, you should not wait to contact a California sexual assault attorney to discuss your options for filing a claim. It takes time to investigate claims and prepare to file a lawsuit against the school and the doctor.
We encourage you to contact our office for a confidential, free consultation with our attorney. Everything you say during your consultation is held in the strictest confidence. We provide a safe, judgment-free environment where you can tell your story and receive the legal counsel and support you need as you decide how you want to proceed. We give you the information you need, but we never pressure you into any action that you are uncomfortable taking.
It is our goal to help you seek justice for the terrible wrong that has been committed. We are solely interested in providing you the legal services necessary to help you take whatever action you feel comfortable taking against parties who are guilty of criminal acts, negligence, and other wrongdoing.
If you are struggling to deal with sexual assault and sexual harassment by Dr. Kelly or any party, we also encourage you to seek professional help to deal with the aftermath of sexual abuse. You can get information about services in your area by contacting the national sexual assault hotline at 800-656-4673 or by talking with your family doctor or other health provider.
What will I receive if I file a civil lawsuit against Dr. Kelly and USC?
Victims of sexual abuse, sexual assault, and sexual harassment can pursue damages through a civil action against their abusers. Civil claims may be filed even though criminal charges may not have been filed, or the person was acquitted of criminal charges. The civil lawsuit and the legal requirements for proving a civil claim are separate from any criminal proceedings that may or may not occur.
The compensation you might receive for a civil claim against USC and Dr. Kelly depends on numerous factors. However, common damages that are included in most sexual abuse and sexual assault cases include compensation for:
- Medical expenses related to the sexual assault, including ongoing psychological therapy and other forms of mental health treatment.
- Loss of income incurred because of the sexual assault and the injuries caused by the assault, including emotional and mental injuries.
- Pain and suffering, including long-term psychological difficulties, mental anguish, emotional distress, and physical pain.
- Permanent physical impairments or injuries caused by the sexual assault.
It is difficult to place a value on a person’s suffering, especially when the damages are emotional and psychological. However, with the assistance of medical experts, we can build a strong case for maximum compensation for damages in a sexual assault case.
Unfortunately, money will not undo the damage done by Dr. Kelly’s alleged sexual assaults. However, filing a civil claim can help bring some measure of closure for sexual assault victims. Although it can be painful and difficult to face an abuser in court, it can also help some victims with the healing process.
Filing a civil lawsuit also brings to light the wrongdoing and misconduct of the university. It is alleged that the university has neglected to protect its students for decades. By highlighting the university’s misconduct and wrongdoing, changes might be instituted that protect other students from being victims of sexual assault and sexual abuse at campus health care facilities. For many victims, being a part of exposing the wrongdoing so that other students do not suffer the same injuries can also help during the healing process.
Do I Need a California Sexual Assault Attorney?
If you are the victim of sexual assault, it can help to speak with a California sexual assault attorney as soon as possible. Proving the legal elements of sexual assault or sexual harassment cases can be challenging. An experienced attorney understands these challenges and what evidence is required to prove each legal element needed to win a sexual assault claim.
In addition to legal counsel, attorneys can also provide guidance and direction in seeking support services and other resources for victims of sexual assault or sexual abuse. In many cases, medical experts are required to provide testimony and evidence as to the extent of the injuries and damages suffered by the victim. An attorney with experience handling sexual abuse cases has a network of medical experts and resources he can utilize to help in building the case, but also provide help to the victim.
Contact a Sexual Assault Attorney in California for a Free Case Review
Before you agree to become part of a class action lawsuit or attempt to file a claim without an attorney, contact our office for a free consultation with Attorney Bobby Thompson. You can discuss your case in a safe, confidential setting with an experienced attorney who genuinely cares and wants to help you seek the justice you deserve.
Contact our office by calling 1-650-513-6111 for more information or to schedule your appointment with attorney Bobby Thompson today.