Attorneys: Dr. Derrick Todd Used His Position as Trusted Medical Professional to Groom and Prey on Patients; 100s of Other Sexual Assault Survivors Yet to Come Forward.
BOSTON – OCTOBER 10, 2023 – Brigham and Women’s Hospital (Brigham) and its former employee, Dr. Derrick J. Todd, are facing a major lawsuit brought by one of Todd’s former patients, Mimi DiTrani, who Todd sexually assaulted repeatedly under the guise of performing medical procedures. The lawsuit includes counts of battery, negligence, and intentional infliction of emotional distress. It also names as defendants Brigham and Women’s Faulkner Hospital, Mass General Brigham Community Physicians, Inc., and Charles River Medical Associates, P.C., where Todd also practiced.
Todd, who was a rheumatologist at Brigham until he voluntarily agreed to stop practicing medicine and his employment was terminated, performed medically unnecessary and inappropriate vaginal and breast examinations on DiTrani who was only seeing him for a joint and skin condition.
DiTrani’s attorneys at Peiffer Wolf Carr Kane Conway & Wise (Peiffer Wolf) and Justice Law Collaborative indicated that Todd assaulted well over 100 other victims.
Mimi DiTrani said: “When you trust someone in a position of power, go to them for healing, and are instead hurt, it’s frightening, confusing, and difficult to process. There is no shame. Predators are adept at picking up cues others cannot see. I have decided to come forward because someone must. Nature has taught us there is safety in numbers. I want anyone who was harmed in the way that I was to know they are not alone, and there is nothing to fear. I want to be the voice for the voiceless and encourage them to speak. In so doing, we can ensure this does not happen again, and that the healing process can begin.”
Brian Perkins, partner at Peiffer Wolf, said: “It’s shocking and disgusting that a doctor would use his position of authority and trust to prey on his patients, but what’s even more stunning is that this could happen at such a world-renowned hospital. We’re sending a clear message today that this will not be tolerated. Ever.”
Paula Bliss, partner at Justice Law Collaborative, said: “This should be a wake-up call for hospitals and patients alike. Because of the unique relationship between medical professionals and their patients, we especially must hold doctors and medical institutions accountable to get justice for these survivors, and to help prevent sexual predators from assaulting unsuspecting patients in the future.”
Mimi DiTrani first sought medical care at Brigham for a genetic condition that affects the joints and skin, in November 2022. Derrick Todd sent DiTrani a text message suggesting that she had been recommended to initiate care with him and asked if she could call him to personally to set up an appointment.
DiTrani first saw Todd that month at Charles River Medical Associates medical offices in Framingham for what was supposed to be rheumatology-related care and treatment. However, beginning with this first visit, Todd began subjecting her to a course of predatory grooming, boundary violating, mental, emotional, and physical abuse.
At the first visit in November 2022, Todd asked DiTrani a series of inappropriate, invasive, and exploitative questions about her appearance and sexual history. He also coerced DiTrani to disrobe in front of him, alone in the examination room. Todd then performed a medically unnecessary breast examination and a medically unnecessary gynecological examination.
Todd told DiTrani that she needed to continue to see him regularly in person. DiTrani, desperate for relief from her medical condition and trusting that Todd was trying to treat her, was unknowingly being groomed by Todd and dutifully returned to Brigham’s offices for multiple follow up visits in December 2022 and January 2023.
Todd would often ask DiTrani to visit him at Brigham’s medical offices early in the morning before regular office hours, or in the early evening as his last patient of the day. Todd began to call and text DiTrani frequently. Often the communication was inappropriate and not related to medical care. The discussions during these calls and text exchanges were designed to groom DiTrani and lead her to believe that her medical conditions required frequent office visits.
During each follow up visit, Todd’s predatory and abusive conduct continued.
On July 31, 2023, Todd was terminated from Brigham after an internal investigation forced Brigham to take action. On September 5, 2023, Todd signed a voluntary agreement to not practice medicine.
Since his termination and agreement to not practice medicine, Todd has continued to contact and harass DiTrani by phone and through text messages.
Max Karlin at (703) 276-3255 or [email protected].
Peiffer Wolf Carr Kane Conway & Wise is a national law firm with offices in New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles, New Orleans, Cleveland, Youngstown, and St. Louis. The firm has extensive experiences representing assault survivors, including thousands abused while using rideshare apps. Visit www.sexualassaultvictimadvocates.com for more information.
Justice Law Collaborative is a national law firm with its main office in the Boston area, Massachusetts and was formed to help provide trauma informed legal services to those who need it the most. The firm has extensive experiences representing assault survivors, including those abused by Dr. Larry Nassar. Visit www.JusticeLawCollaborative.com for more information.