Teen says accused Omaha doctor groped her during surgery

Published: Sep. 26, 2019 at 6:21 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

6 News has learned of another victim who claims an Omaha doctor groped her sexually during hip surgery.

The difference between this plaintiff and the other three who have

is age — she was a teenager. The victim was 13-years old at the time of the alleged sexual battery.

The civil lawsuit filed in Douglas County District Court alleges Dr. Mark Dietrich inappropriately touched her during two surgeries in October and November of 2016.

The victim — who is 16 now — said she only learned about the allegations after Omaha Police talked to her.

The teen was under anesthesia at the time of the surgeries. The lawsuit calls the doctor’s actions “extreme and outrageous.”

In at least one of the previous lawsuits, Dr. Dietrich said the actions he took during surgery were directly related to the procedure.

Two years ago, 14-year-old Brooklyn Meers got shocking news that despite being so young, her parents believed she deserved to know.

“We just sat her down and told her during your surgery when you were under anesthesia, the doctor touched you inappropriately and it was witnessed by a nurse,” said her mother, Shawnette Meers.

Though unable to remember what happened under anesthesia, Brooklyn — now age 16 — can’t forget being told she was allegedly touched inappropriately.

“It hits me hard sometimes, especially when I go to the doctor. I always have to have one of my parents with me. I had to go to the school counselor a couple times,” Brooklyn said.

In 2017, several weeks after hip surgery performed by Dr. Mark Dietrich at an Omaha hospital, Brooklyn’s parents got a call from an Omaha Police Detective.

“It was an absolute shock,” said Shawnette.

The investigator said a witness in the operating room allegedly saw the doctor improperly touch the 14-year-old.

The lawsuit against Dr. Dietrich eventually will be heard in civil court, but Brooklyn and her mother want the county attorney to look at the case for a possible criminal charge; and because of her age at the time of the procedure, that could be a felony.

A witness allegation that Dr. Dietrich improperly touched a 14-year-old patient isn’t enough to file a criminal charge.

According to Douglas County Attorney, Doug Kleine, “We have to be able to prove sexual gratification if it’s a sexual contact case, whether it’s a child or an adult. It’s a different classification of a crime. For an adult, it’s a misdemeanor. If it’s a child sexual contact it can be a felony.”

Whether or not a criminal charge is ever filed against Dr. Dietrich, mother, and daughter plan to face him again. Not as a parent and patient but as plaintiffs in a civil suit.

“He’s a doctor and I trusted him. I trusted him to fix my hips not sexually assault me. It’s not ok,” Brooklyn said.

All four cases are civil lawsuits. So far, there have been no criminal charges filed against Dr. Dietrich, and that’s been frustrating for victims.