Case against North Shore surgical oncologist dropped

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A Nassau County judge dismissed charges against Dr. Dwight De Risi. (Photo from Long Island Breast Care)
A Nassau County judge dismissed charges against Dr. Dwight De Risi. (Photo from Long Island Breast Care)

A Nassau County judge dismissed charges against a Great Neck oncologist accused by a patient of forcible touching and sexual abuse last Friday, ending a nearly year-long case.

In her decision, Nassau District Court Judge Valerie Alexander said,  “no inference may be drawn from the allegations that the touching was done for the purpose of sexual gratification or degradation.”

Alexander also wrote that the “only reasonable inference that can be drawn from the circumstances is that, seeing the complainant in pain, the defendant sought to comfort” her, but the judge did not have a conclusion on whether the conduct was appropriate. 

Alexander previously wrote in a January ruling that police had no probable cause to arrest Dr. Dwight De Risi, a breast surgeon in private practice at Long Island Breast Care in Great Neck.

She said it was “incumbent upon the detective to determine that the alleged touching was done with an ulterior motive” and said a conversation about “the appropriateness of the defendant’s actions” was not “memorialized by a detective.”

De Risi, when confronted about the alleged kissing incident by a detective, allegedly said he “hugs and kisses all of his patients, that he is Italian, had been doing it for 37 years,” according to court documents.

The unnamed victim had alleged De Risi kissed her on the mouth, rubbed her inner leg and stomach and told her that she “did good,” according to court documents.

Alexander also denied a motion by prosecutors to reargue the case.

Prosecutors were not immediately available to comment last Friday.

“Dr. De Risi has always maintained that the charges were unwarranted,” Joseph Conway, an attorney representing De Risi, said Friday afternoon. “Today’s decision affirms that. We are grateful that he has been exonerated.”

John Carman, another lawyer representing De Risi, did not immediately respond to a request for comment, but told Newsday that the defense was “grateful for the court’s well-reasoned decision which returns Dr. De Risi to his patients and restores his good name.”

This story will be updated as more information becomes available.

2 COMMENTS

  1. Dr. De Risi was highly recommended to me from a friend when my sister developed breast cancer. My sister is always a nervous wreck. He was so warm and comforting and he treated her with the utmost respect and warmth.
    To attack a doctor who’s culture being Italian, means being a warm, caring person who hugs his patients is disgusting. That’s what his patients love about him he is like family. A truly caring doctor, which is rare these days.
    I believe in Karma and for what this woman did to this doctor and his family this past year, her day is coming.

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