Psychiatrist charged with fondling patients in guise of blood pressure check

The Bucks County district attorney’s office said 42-year-old Dr. Basem Shlewiet of Buckingham was arrested late Thursday afternoon and charged with multiple counts of corruption of minors, indecent assault and unlawful contact with a minor.

Action News was on the scene as Shlewiet was leaving his arraignment hearing; he tried to hide his face with his coat jacket and would not answer questions.

Doylestown police said they received reports from three separate young women from April to December 2013 alleging Shlewiet touched them inappropriately in his Doylestown office on the unit block of North Franklin.

Basem Schlewiet PHOTO 3Complainant #3, a 14-year-old, says during her visit, the doctor asked how often she had sexual intercourse. She told him it was none of his business.

He then told her to lie down on the couch so he could check her blood pressure. He later reached under her shirt and placed his hands on her left breast.

As she was leaving, with her father waiting in the lobby, the doctor called her over and said, ‘No, no, no, what happens in my office, stays in my office.’ He said this in a ‘creepy tone’ and then winked at her.

The other two complainants, a 17-year-old and a woman who was 22 at the time, told similar stories which began with him needing to check their blood pressure.

The 17-year-old says he told her to lie down on the couch because her blood pressure was high. The affidavit of probable cause says the defendant then placed his hand between her legs and reached inside her clothes. He later advised her that her blood pressure had gone down and that it must have been the massage that caused the change.

Dr. Shlewiet, a married father of 3 young children, was ordered held at the Bucks County Correctional Facility in lieu of 10% of 250,000 bail.

The district attorney’s office is asking anyone else who believes they have been subject to inappropriate contact with Shlewiet to contact police.

Source: “Doylestown psychiatrist charged with fondling 3 patients,” Action News (Philadelphia, PA), January 23, 2014.

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