Guys like this give breast surgeons a bad name

As a surgical oncologist whose practice is made up largely of treating breast cancer, I really hate guys like this:

MIAMI – A 76-year-old man claiming to be a doctor went door-to-door in a Florida neighborhood offering free breast exams and was charged with sexually assaulting two women who accepted the offer, police said Thursday.

One woman became suspicious after the man asked her to remove all her clothes and began conducting a purported genital exam without donning rubber gloves, investigators said.

The woman then phoned the Broward County Sheriff’s Office, and the suspect fled. He was arrested at another woman’s apartment in the same Lauderdale Lakes neighborhood on Wednesday, a sheriff’s spokesman said.

The white-haired suspect, Philip Winikoff, carried a black bag and claimed to be visiting on behalf of a local hospital.

“He told the woman that he was in the neighborhood offering free breast exams,” sheriff’s spokesman Hugh Graf said in a statement.

At least two women, both in their 30s, let him into their homes, and he fondled and sexually assaulted them, the investigators said.

And here is a more detailed account:

The 35-year-old woman told police she was approached by an elderly man carrying a black bag as she was walking to the trash can in front of her Lauderdale Lakes apartment on Wednesday.

On Wednesday, Broward sheriff’s deputies arrested the suspect, identified as 76-year-old Philip Winikoff of Coconut Creek, as he came out of a second woman’s home. He was charged with sexual battery and simple assault.

”He was an older man, with white hair,” Felix said. “And he was carrying a medical bag. We didn’t doubt him.”

The man told her he was a doctor from North Miami Hospital, Felix told reporters. The hospital was reaching out to the community to promote breast cancer awareness, he told her, and offered to give her a free breast examination.

“My girlfriend hasn’t been in the country for a long time and doesn’t speak English very well, so that’s one reason why she believed him,” Felix said.

“He immediately pulled out a stethoscope and began checking her breasts.'”

Winikoff allegedly said he needed privacy to conduct the examination, so he and the victim went into the spare bedroom.

”I was trying to get ready for a job interview, so I was in the bathroom and that’s when I heard her calling for me,” Felix said. “She had come out of the room and looked scared to death.'”

She later told authorities the man had assaulted her vaginally and anally.

Damn it, it’s hard enough getting women to do proper breast care, see their doctor for routine breast exams, and get their mammograms without idiots like this sowing suspicion about health care professionals. There are indeed some outreach programs with mobile mammography machines and even nurses (and sometimes doctors) who go out to help teach women to do self-breast exams and encourage them to get mammograms when appropriate. Clowns like this pervert don’t help us win an already uphill battle.

By Orac

Orac is the nom de blog of a humble surgeon/scientist who has an ego just big enough to delude himself that someone, somewhere might actually give a rodent's posterior about his copious verbal meanderings, but just barely small enough to admit to himself that few probably will. That surgeon is otherwise known as David Gorski.

That this particular surgeon has chosen his nom de blog based on a rather cranky and arrogant computer shaped like a clear box of blinking lights that he originally encountered when he became a fan of a 35 year old British SF television show whose special effects were renowned for their BBC/Doctor Who-style low budget look, but whose stories nonetheless resulted in some of the best, most innovative science fiction ever televised, should tell you nearly all that you need to know about Orac. (That, and the length of the preceding sentence.)

DISCLAIMER:: The various written meanderings here are the opinions of Orac and Orac alone, written on his own time. They should never be construed as representing the opinions of any other person or entity, especially Orac's cancer center, department of surgery, medical school, or university. Also note that Orac is nonpartisan; he is more than willing to criticize the statements of anyone, regardless of of political leanings, if that anyone advocates pseudoscience or quackery. Finally, medical commentary is not to be construed in any way as medical advice.

To contact Orac: [email protected]

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