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A growing number of women are stepping forward to participate in sexual assault lawsuits against the University of Southern California and a former gynecologist at the student health center, indicating that they were among the large number of victims abused by Dr. George Tyndall over the past few decades.
One of the latest complaints was brought earlier this month by a group of 30 former students, all identified only as “Jane Doe” to protect their identities. The complaint (PDF) was filed in California Superior Court in Los Angeles, naming George Tyndall and the University of Southern California (USC) as defendants.
To date, nearly 300 women have filed USC sexual assault lawsuits, and a number of class action claims have been brought to pursue damages on behalf of all students treated by the former gynecologist at the student health center.
In May, USC President C. L. Max Nikias agreed to resign just days after he sent a letter to students and staff announcing the results of an investigation into allegations that Tyndall engaged in inappropriate behavior with USC students for decades while working as a gynecologist in the university health clinic.
The lawsuit includes story after story of female students who endured molestation by Tyndall, in most cases repeatedly moving his fingers in and out of their vaginas during “examinations”, while making sexually inappropriate comments or telling them sexually inappropriate stories. In some cases, the students say they reported Tyndall’s behavior, but that the university took no action.
The complaints note that Tyndall’s staff, including nurse chaperones, were aware of the behavior but did nothing. One of the plaintiffs indicates that she endured 20 minutes of Tyndall pushing his fingers painfully in and out of her in 1992 while a nurse watched.
“As Tyndall sexually abused Jane Doe 77 in this way, a USC-employed nurse was present in theexamination room, observing Tyndall’s abuse yet doing nothing to stop the abuse,” the lawsuit states. “Eventually, the USC-employed nurse told Jane Doe 77, ‘Honey, don’t come back here, go somewhere else.'”
Tyndall was allowed to retire in June 2017, and to date faces no criminal charges, despite dozens of claims that he assaulted female patients, and made both sexually suggestive and racist comments for years.
While USC indicated that it could find no evidence of criminal conduct, the University acknowledged in the statement that Tyndall’s behavior was unacceptable, and should not have been tolerated for so long.
The pattern of USC student sexual abuse was only addressed by the university after a nurse, frustrated with the lack of response to numerous complaints, took the issue to the campus’s rape crisis center. That led to an investigation of Tyndall, along with a suspension of his duties, and eventually a deal between Tyndall and USC that culminated in his retirement.
The University only reported his activities to the California Medical Board in March, after Tyndall contacted USC indicating that he wanted his job back.