On March 27, 2006, a health care worker charged with multiple counts of sexually abusing female prisoners at the Suffolk County Jail apparently committed suicide by stepping into the path of an oncoming Long Island Railroad Train. He was pronounced dead at the scene just before midnight.
Physician's Assistant Gary Feinberg, 48, had been arrested on February 8, 2006, and charged with 16 counts of second-degree sexual abuse and 5 counts of misconduct, said Sheriff's Department Chief of Staff Alan Otto.
Additional charges were pending. Feinberg, who had pleaded not guilty to the charges, was free on $2,500 bail and had returned to his job at the jail, though his contact with prisoners was supposedly prohibited.
Feinberg's suicide coincided with the filing of a $10 million lawsuit by one of the victims. Rochelle Ramos claimed in her lawsuit--filed the day of Feinberg's death--that Feinberg rubbed up against her and fondled her roughly during a routine exam on December 28, 2005. Though Ramos is no longer in jail she still suffers from the assault. I have to struggle with the feeling, Ramos, 40, said during a news conference at her attorneys office. I feel so gross. I feel so violated.
Police said Feinberg inappropriately touched at least five women. Ramoss attorney, Leonard Leeds, said dozens more have come forward since. Leeds, who called the suicide a tragedy, noted the county may still be liable if officials were aware of Feinbergs behavior and did nothing to stop him. If there were so many complaints and allegations, why didnt Suffolk County do anything? Leeds said.
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