LYNCHBURG, Va. – Criminal charges against a Lynchburg doctor have been dismissed.
Dr. Spencer Latham, a physical therapist with Centra, was in the process of appealing two convictions from May 2021 in Lynchburg General District Court for sexual battery, when both charges against him were dismissed on Friday, March 18.
On Wednesday, the charges were withdrawn.
The reason for this decision is because the complaining witness no longer wants to pursue the criminal case, according to Lynchburg Commonwealth’s Attorney Bethany Harrison.
The civil suit filed against him still remains and is scheduled for a hearing on March 30.
ORIGINAL STORY - December 29, 2021
Controversy rising at a local hospital. A patient is suing Centra Health and one of its doctors for assault and negligence during an appointment.
According to Centra, Dr. Spencer Latham is a physical therapist at the hospital. A judge found him guilty of sexual battery in May. He appealed the case for a jury trial that will take place on Jan. 3.
A 22-year-old woman, who is not named, filed the lawsuit Tuesday. The lawsuit says she was Latham’s patient and that she scheduled an appointment for her lower back pain in January.
According to the complaint, Latham pulled her sweatpants down, exposing her without asking. It goes on to say there was inappropriate touching, compliments and behavior the woman describes as sexual rather than clinical.
The lawsuit also states Centra is negligent for not having a woman chaperone during the appointment.
10 News reached out to Centra officials who replied with a statement, saying:
“We have become aware of the lawsuit, although we have not been served. When Centra became aware of the concerns, we undertook an internal investigation and as a result, are supporting Mr. Latham and the services he provided. We do not believe there was any wrong doing on Mr. Latham’s part.”Diane Ludwig, Centra Spokesperson
Centra adds it does not have a policy requiring therapists to be supervised when with a patient. The lawsuit is asking for more than $3 million from Centra and Latham and requests a trial by jury.