USC Students and Alumnae Join Class-Action Lawsuit Against University’s Gynecologist for Sexual Violations
More than 20 women have stepped forward to represent a proposed class of “hundreds if not thousands”
LOS ANGELES – A growing class-action lawsuit filed against the University of Southern California (USC) and the university’s longtime gynecologist, Dr. George Tyndall, for his sexual abuse, molestation, and unwanted touching of his patients at USC is now 21 women-strong, as additional alumnae and students are stepping forward to join the lawsuit brought by attorneys at Hagens Berman.
Please note: Your protection is Hagens Berman’s top priority. We welcome any information, and those who contact our firm may remain anonymous in their potential case. Hagens Berman will request that the Court permit our clients to proceed anonymously as a Jane Doe. Our attorneys have experience in protecting plaintiffs who wish to remain anonymous, both as whistleblowers and as survivors of sexual misconduct.
The complaint filed June 4, 2018, in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California detail accusations against USC’s Dr. Tyndall by 15 more women.
“If the MeToo movement has taught us anything, it’s that there is strength in numbers,” said Elizabeth Fegan, partner at Hagens Berman representing the proposed class of women against USC and Dr. Tyndall. “We applaud the incredibly brave women who have stepped forward to join us in this case and take a stand against systemic abuse and abusers.”
“USC hid Dr. Tyndall’s abhorrent actions for decades, and we’re here to bring USC’s cover-up under the glare of the public eye,” Fegan added. “It is our hope that this lawsuit will expose USC for its blatantly irresponsible behavior that led to the violation of hundreds if not thousands of women over the course of decades, and bring them justice.”
The lawsuit states, “USC violated its female students’ trust by knowingly putting women in the room for treatment by Tyndall, knowing that inappropriate physical contact and violations would occur. In fact, USC nurses, chaperones, and other staff members were regularly present in the examination rooms, observed the inappropriate sexual molestation, and took no steps to stop it as it occurred.”
“Moreover, even as numerous supervisors and administrators became aware of Tyndall’s harmful conduct, USC failed to act to protect its female students by removing Tyndall from his position even though it was clear he was unfit to treat patients,” it adds.
The lawsuit accuses Dr. Tyndall of sexually harassing, abusing, molesting and engaging in wildly inappropriate behavior with female students who sought his medical care at USC’s student health clinic and accuses USC of brazen negligence in failing to stop his violation of female students. Dr. Tyndall oversaw tens of thousands of female patients during his time at USC, and the university knew of his behavior since at least the 1990s but failed to take action.
One nurse at USC stated she repeatedly expressed concerns about Tyndall to clinic administrators, “but they seemed uninterested.” It wasn’t until the nurse went to USC’s rape crisis center in 2016 and spoke to its executive director that the investigation that led to Tyndall’s removal began. USC admitted that prior complaints (dating back to 2000) were sufficient to terminate Tyndall, and should have been elevated for “proper investigation.”
According to the complaint, ultimately, in 2017, the university began termination proceedings. However, USC did not contact law enforcement, the attorney general or the medical licensing board, nor did USC inform Tyndall’s patients.
Attorneys at Hagens Berman achieved a nationwide sexual harassment settlement on behalf of 16,000 women and also tried the first ever sexual harassment case in Washington state in 1985. The firm represents multiple women on behalf of a class of all victims who were harassed or otherwise assaulted by Harvey Weinstein, seeking to hold him and his co-conspirators accountable for a years-long pattern of sexual harassment and cover-ups.
Recent news headlines have brought these heinous acts to the forefront, and many victims have bravely stepped forward to tell their stories. Hagens Berman continues this fight, working to help achieve justice for those who have been victim to sexual violation, and enforce systemic change. Tell us about your case.
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