A Great Neck surgical oncologist and professor was arraigned on two misdemeanor charges of sexual misconduct on Tuesday.
Dr. Dwight De Risi, 70, a breast surgeon in private practice at Long Island Breast Care in Great Neck and a clinical assistant professor at the Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell, had been arrested on June 21.
He now faces charges of forcible touching and sexual abuse in the third degree, according to court records, which allegedly took place at his practice.
Miriam Sholder, a spokeswoman for Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas, said no further information could be shared “due to the nature of the charges.”
Nassau District Court Judge William Hohouser released De Risi after he promised in writing to return to court for all proceedings and issued a stay-away order of protection, which was signed on behalf of the unnamed victim.
Joseph Conway, De Risi’s Mineola-based defense attorney, described his client as a “well-known and highly respected breast cancer surgeon” who has served over 30,000 patients for four decades facing “unfounded” and “completely frivolous” charges.
“Today’s charges, brought after zero investigation, are unfounded and completely frivolous,” Conway said in an emailed statement. “We will begin the process of bringing the true facts to Law Enforcement immediately, and vindicating Dr. De Risi’s impeccable reputation.”
“Among those facts will be an eye-witness to the events, who completely contradicts any allegations of wrong-doing by Dr. De Risi,” the statement concluded.
Terry Lynam, a spokesman for Northwell Health, said De Risi is not employed by the health network but that he has an academic appointment and admitting privileges in three of its hospitals: North Shore University Hospital, Long Island Jewish Medical Center, and Glen Cove Hospital.
When asked if De Risi could possibly lose these admitting privileges as a result of the charges, Lynam said “that’s always a possibility, yes,” but that the matter is under investigation and it’s too early to say.
De Risi is due back in court on Aug. 16.