A second woman completed her testimony Thursday against Dr. Scott Dodd Anderson and told a story very much like the first that the workers' comp physician sexually molested her during two job-injury examinations.
Many of the details the woman provided to the Sacramento Superior Court jury rang similar, if not identical, to the testimony of the previous witness. They both said Anderson ordered them off the exam table, to put their hands on it and bend over while he went to work. When they nervously expressed bewilderment as he touched their private areas, both testified he eventually stopped, said nothing and left the exam room.
"I was in shock," the second woman said. "I was 60 at the time I'm 63 now and I've been to a fair amount of physicians, and never experienced anything like this at all."
Anderson, also 63, is on trial for 13 felony counts of engaging in sexual contact with patients and nine misdemeanor counts of sexual battery on four patients he treated at U.S. HealthWorks' occupational medicine office at 9261 Folsom Blvd. Anderson's medical license has been suspended by the state, pending the trial.
Defense attorney Patrick K. Hanly sought to paint the second woman as emotionally distraught and perhaps a bit eccentric. She did say she once drove into Anderson's neighborhood to see where he lived, and she confirmed that she showed up at one of the doctor's previous court hearings, sitting in the back in jeans and a baseball cap a "disguise," Hanly called it.
The woman also acknowledged that she filed a lawsuit against Anderson and U.S. HealthWorks. Hanly asked if she hopes to collect some money. "Yes, I do," she said.
Hanly also poked at inconsistencies between what the woman told sheriff's detectives, what she told a physical therapist at U.S. HealthWorks and what she told other doctors who examined her as part of her civil suit. But if her stories didn't track with mathematical precision from interview to interview, the essence of her recollection promises to at least cost the gray-suited defendant free on $750,000 bail a few sleepless nights while he sweats out the verdict.
Under questioning from Deputy District Attorney Laura West, the woman whose name and place of employment are being withheld by The Bee because of the nature of the charges said she injured her hip working on her job with a large state agency. She said she'd been treated several times in the past by Anderson at U.S. HealthWorks without any trouble.
Testifying over two days in front of Judge Eugene L. Balanon, the woman described herself as an assertive sort about "as shy as a Mack truck" in the eyes of her husband, she told the jury. But she said when she went to visit Anderson on May 6, 2009, and he ran his hands around her, "I was frozen."
At Anderson's first misplaced touch, the woman testified she told him, "That's not where the pain is, doctor." When he continued, she said she walked out of Anderson's office "in another world."
The woman had another appointment with Anderson just six days later. She said she did not want to cancel because she wanted to "wrap up" her workers' comp case. She testified she was willing to give Anderson the benefit of the doubt, but that she returned with enough trepidation to tell him, "I feel great," when in fact her hip still hurt.
"I lied," she said. "I didn't want to be examined again."
But Anderson told her, "I want to examine you," she testified.
"My heart fell to the ground," she said. This time, she told jurors Anderson was more aggressive than the week before, touching her up and down and pushing ahead with the alleged sexual battery through her attempts to knock his hands away.
The exam left her "almost completely catatonic," the woman said. She said she told Anderson he again wasn't checking her where she hurt. "That's enough," she said she told him, which prompted Anderson to stop and leave.
"Unbelievable," she said. "At my age."
In his cross-examination, Hanly dug hard at the woman about her mental and emotional state.
She said she has suffered a degree of anxiety about the case, even worrying that she might run into Anderson again in public.
"I know he was out and about and perhaps I would run into him, and occasionally out of the corner of my eye I thought I did see him," she testified Thursday.
Yet the woman said she did dress down to attend one of Anderson's court appearances and that she did drive into his neighborhood once. "I was just trying to figure out what he was all about," she said.
The woman grew flustered when Hanly asked about what she had told police, how it compared with the stories she gave to assorted medical personnel and her employers, where exactly Anderson had touched her and why she let him examine her a second time after the first problematic visit.
Through the onslaught, the woman did not waver much from the basics of the narrative drawn out of her by the prosecutor.
"What I'm saying today is correct," she told Hanly.