LOS ANGELES (AP) — Two-hundred professors signed a letter demanding that the president of the University of Southern California resign amid allegations that USC failed to properly respond to complaints of misconduct by a gynecologist who worked at a student health clinic for 30 years.
The letter addressed to USC trustees asserts that President C. L. Max Nikias has lost the moral authority to lead the university and its investigation into institutional failures, the Los Angeles Times reported Tuesday.
An Associated Press email requesting comment from the president’s office was not immediately returned.
Board of trustees Chairman John Mork released a statement saying its executive committee strongly supports Nikias.
The gynecologist, Dr. George Tyndall, denied wrongdoing in interviews with the Times. He didn’t return phone calls and it wasn’t known Tuesday if he has an attorney.
Dr. George Tyndall routinely made crude comments, took inappropriate photographs and forced plaintiffs to strip naked and groped them under the guise of medical treatment for his “sexual gratification,” according to civil lawsuits filed this week.
The latest complaint announced by attorney Gloria Allred was filed Tuesday on behalf of Daniella Mohazab, a USC student seeking a master’s degree in communications management. Mohazab said Tyndall saw her at the clinic in 2016 for an STD test. Tyndall made comments about her Filipina heritage, including telling her that “Filipinas are good in bed,” according to court documents.
The suit accuses him of not using gloves during an exam during which she felt uncomfortable.
“I am still in shock that USC had heard about Dr. Tyndall’s inappropriate conduct and allowed him to continue practicing,” Mohazab said at a press conference.
Allred also read a statement from an unnamed former USC student who claims Tyndall took photographs of her during an exam in the early 1990s. The woman said she complained to the director of the health clinic and notified the USC women’s advocacy office.
“Assuming these allegations made by witness Jane Doe are true, USC was told as early as 1991 about Dr. Tyndall’s sexual misconduct,” Allred said.
At least a half-dozen other women have sued the university alleging misconduct by Tyndall. The complaints accuse the university of failing to properly respond to complaints about Tyndall.
USC said in a statement that it was aware of the lawsuits.
“We are focused on ensuring the safety and well-being of our students and providing support to those affected,” the statement said.
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