Judge rules for veterans sexually abused at Kansas hospital
“Obviously, the way the VA treated them was horrible. But also the way the Department of Justice has treated them throughout this litigation has just been inhumane."
KANSAS CITY, Kan. – A federal judge has awarded damages to two veterans who say they were sexually abused by a former physician assistant at a VA hospital in Kansas.
U.S. District Judge Daniel Crabtree ruled in separate decisions Monday that hospital personnel should have “fairly foreseen” the wrongful conduct by physician assistant Mark Wisner, KCUR-FM reported.
Multiple patients had complained about Wisner’s conduct at the Dwight D. Eisenhower VA Medical Center in Leavenworth, Kansas, during the years when Wisner treated both veterans.
Wisner is serving a 16-year prison sentence after he was convicted of aggravated sexual battery and aggravated criminal sodomy in 2017.
Crabtree awarded more than $538,000 to one veteran and more than $1.5 million to the other after they sued the government for medical malpractice alleging they were subjected to unnecessary genital exams while they were patients.
“Obviously, the way the VA treated them was horrible. But also the way the Department of Justice has treated them throughout this litigation has just been inhumane,” said Danny Thomas, the attorney for the two men.
The government never disputed that Wisner sexually molested the veterans, but argued it shouldn’t be held accountable for his conduct because it was outside the scope of his employment.
The U.S. attorney’s office did not immediately respond Tuesday to a request for comment.
More than 80 veterans at the Leavenworth VA settled last year for $7 million. Seven more cases remain to be tried.