Third woman files suit against Dr. Solomon Physician's lawyer denounces 'attacks'

August 11, 1993|By Douglas Birch | Douglas Birch,Staff Writer

A third woman has filed a lawsuit accusing Dr. Neil Solomon, a Baltimore physician and chairman of the governor's Drug and Alcohol Abuse Commission, of luring her into a sexual relationship after she became his patient.

The woman charged that Dr. Solomon "wrongfully began to exploit and manipulate" her for "deviant sexual, prurient and emotional satisfaction" after she sought medical care for an unspecified condition in the late 1980s.

From that time until she left his care in 1991, the suit said, the woman had "intimate physical contact with him [Dr. Solomon] on numerous occasions." The suit said some of the sexual encounters took place at the Hilton Hotel in Pikesville.

The suit, filed yesterday in Baltimore Circuit Court and the Maryland Health Claims Arbitration Office, was the third in less than two weeks to charge Dr. Solomon with having sexual relations with a female patient.

City Circuit Judge Joseph P. McCurdy Jr. ordered the woman's name sealed in court papers, as were the names of the other two women.

Joanne L. Suder, the lawyer representing all three women, said the client who filed the latest suit lives in "the western part of the country" but declined to identify her further.

Benjamin R. Civiletti, an attorney for Dr. Solomon, said in a written statement last night he planned "a full investigation into all the underlying facts, including the motivation and timing of these allegations."

Dr. Solomon, 61, has said that friends and relatives suggest the suits are related to reports he is considering running for governor.

Mr. Civiletti said his office plans to protect Dr. Solomon's "stature and reputation . . . against these malicious attacks, and that we intend to pursue all legal remedies that are available to him in this effort."

The lawsuit also names Dr. Marc B. Lipton, a psychologist with an office near Dr. Solomon's, as a defendant.

The suit said that Dr. Solomon referred the woman to Dr. Lipton for treatment. The woman told Dr. Lipton of her sexual liaisons with Dr. Solomon, the suit charged, but the psychologist failed "to protect his patient from further abuse" by not advising her to stop seeing the physician. The suit also said the psychologist failed to report Dr. Solomon's alleged actions to medical regulatory authorities.

Dr. Lipton could not be reached for comment yesterday.

Dr. Solomon has a private practice in Towson where he specializes in weight control, allergies, fitness and smoking cessation.

From 1969 to 1979, Dr. Solomon was Maryland's first secretary of health and mental hygiene. Gov. William Donald Schaefer appointed him to chair the drug and alcohol panel in 1991.

Yesterday's suit said that the woman suffers "permanent mental anguish" and psychological damage, adding "it is not foreseeable that she will ever recover." The suit seeks at least $40 million for compensatory damages from Dr. Solomon, Dr. Solomon's medical practice and Dr. Lipton.

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