Dr. Torres originally charged with raping a patient.
Frederick, Md (KM) The Frederick County Grand Jury has indicted a local pediatrician on 65 additional charges. The panel on Friday charged Dr. Ernesto Torres with nine counts of child sex abuse, 10 counts of sex abuse of a minor, 43 counts of 3rd-degree sex offense, two counts of 2nd-degree sex offense, and one count of 2nd-degree assault.
Dr. Torres was arrested on Monday afternoon by Frederick Police. He’s expected to have a bond hearing on Tuesday. No time was scheduled.
He had been released on $100,000 secured bond on May 8th. He was told to have no contact with patients of minors, and surrender his passport.
Dr. Torres, 68, was indicted on May 3rd for 2nd-degree rape, 2nd-degree assault and 4th-degree sex offense for sexually assaulting a 18-year-old woman who was a patient. State’s Attorney Charlie Smith says these new charges result from 11 other victims coming forward. “We do have other victims in the case that we, again, are continuing to take a look at on a one-by-one basis. We want to make sure that each case wants to stand on it own before we decide to present to a grand jury and seek charges against the doctor,” he says.
Smith says in many cases, a lot of the victims came forward after hearing about the case in the news media. “Some came forward. Some told their loved ones immediately about this and they nearly left the practice,” he says. “Others told no one until they heard about it happening to others and came forward.”
Those who believe they were victims of Dr. Torres are strongly urged to call Detective Sean McKinney at the Frederick Police Department at 240-578-5683. “It’s a tough case to talk about. It’s a tough case to prosecute. But that’s our intention to move forward after the grand jury and to have these cases heard by a regular jury in Frederick County,” says Smith.
Torres’ Attorney, Richard Bricken, told the Associated Press on Monday that his client is entitled to a presumption of innocence and a fair trial.
Smith says he’s not seen a case like this in all his years as a prosecutor. “I used to be Chief of the Child Abuse and Sex Offense Unit many, many years ago. So we’ve seen a lot of these cases. That’s an awful lot of charges,” he says. “We’ve seen multiple victim cases before, but nothing such as this that I’ve seen in the past 20 to 25 years here in Frederick County.”
There are resources available in Frederick County for those who are victims of sexual assault. They can call the Frederick Police Department’s Victim Services Unit at 301-600-1356. They can contact the Child Advocacy Center at 301-600-1758. Services from Heartly House are also available by calling 301-662-8800.
By Kevin McManus