Psychologist Sergio Martinez-Romero loses license over 8-month sex affair with patient

On September 17, 2011, psychologist Sergio Martinez-Romero surrendered his license to the California Board of Psychology on charges of sexual misconduct and unprofessional conduct.

According to the Board’s Order and Accusation documents, in or about 2003, Martinez-Romero, who then employed by the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health office in Lancaster, California began counseling a female patient (“P.C.”). This patient is described has having been a victim of rape in 2001. “During P.C.’s first counseling session,” the document states, “[Martinez-Romero] discussed P.C.’s rape…and questioned her about her sexual history, if she had orgasms, and if she was in a sexual relationship.”

In 2007, after persistent suggestions by Martinez-Romero , P.C. agreed to go to lunch with him. After lunch, he suggested they get a hotel room to relax. P.C. assumed that he was interested in moving the counseling session to a more private setting. In the room, he told P.C. that she needed him in her life because the rapist might come back and he told her “I want to protect you and your children.” He then engaged her in sexual intercourse.

For the next eight months, Martinez-Romero rented hotel rooms for the purpose of having sex with P.C. but in 2007, he wanted to start meeting at P.C.’s house instead and so would arrive on Monday mornings for sex after P.C.’s daughters went to school. She informed him in August 2008 that he could not come over because her daughters were home and she did not want them to know about their relationship. Martinez-Romero persisted. While engaged in sex, one of P.C.’s daughters walked into the room and was horrified by the scene. Martinez-Romero quickly dressed and left $100 behind.

He called P.C. a short time later and requested an opportunity to the daughter what sex was and how it felt to have sex with her mother. P.C. became furious and reported him to the Department of Mental Health a few days later. A DMH detective outfitted her with a wire and asked her to meet with Martinez-Romero. She met him at a restaurant and during the meeting, he admitted that he’d had a sexual relationship with her.

Source: Stipulated Surrender of License and Order and Accusation in the Matter of the Accusation Against Sergio Martinez-Romero, Psychologist License No. PSY 15419, Case No. 1F-2008-194037, California Board of Psychology.

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