Canadian Shrink Found Guilty of Molesting Patient

by Kilian Melloy

EDGE Staff Reporter

Tuesday July 14, 2009

In a strange back-and-forth mosaic of fact and fiction, a patient accused his psychiatrist of sexual abuse, then recanted that accusation, and then reversed himself once more and said that his recantation was part of a ploy he and the doctor had planned together to clear him of the abuse allegations.

Moreover, the psychiatrist claimed that a recording in which he allegedly admits to sexual contact with a patient was a therapeutic exercise in sexual fantasy, nothing more.

In the end, Ottawa psychiatrist Dr. Juan Tejada was found guilty of sexually abusing his patient (who remains unidentified in the press), even as the judge hearing the case threw out charges stemming from allegations brought by a second accuser regarding sexual assault with an array of different objects, saying that the second accuser's story did not ring true.

In a June 11 story, the Ottawa Sun reported that one patient had initially claimed to have been abused by Tejada over a nine-year period, from 1990-1999.

In 1999, the patient disclosed to medical staff at an Ottawa hospital that he and Tejada had been sexually involved for years.

The patient then backtracked on his allegations, only to tell the court last month that his recantation was a fabrication he and Tejada had cooked up.

The recantation included telling the same staff the patient had originally clued in that the story of the abuse was false, leaving apologetic messages on Tejada's answering machine to the effect that the patient had falsely accused Tejada, and writing a letter that stated that the accusations were untrue.

The letter, the patient told the court, was written together with Tejada.

Said the patient of the letter, "It had to be convincing and I think it was."

The court heard other evidence that indicated that Tejada and at least one patient had been sexually involved: a tape recording, allegedly between the Tejada and an accuser, contained what sounded like an admission that the men had had sexual relations.

Tejada, the newspaper reported, did not deny that is was himself on the tape, but he claimed that the recording did not reflect any actual events; rather, Tejada said, he was playing along with the patient's fantasies about having sex with men as a means of therapy.

A June 23 article at the same newspaper addressed this part of the story in greater detail, reporting that Tejada was grilled about the recordings by prosecutor Michael Boyce.

"In the whole record of... therapy, you make no note of this type of therapy--where his fantasies become his reality and you go along with it," Boyce pointed out to the accused.

Added the prosecutor, "I'm suggesting you simply fabricated this story of the therapy to cover for the fact you are caught on tape admitting to this."

Replied Tejada, "No.

"That's not correct," Tejada continued.

Tejada was found guilty of sexually abusing one patient on July 13, a follow-up story in the Sun reported the following day.

The article said the judge in the case, Ontario Superior Court Justice Roydon Kealey, was cited in the article as saying that he was convinced in part by testimony from the accuser's girlfriend.

However, the judge did not find a second accuser's story convincing. The second accuser said that Tejada had attacked him sexually with a variety of implements, including a hose, a riding crop, and a toilet brush.

Said the judge of the second accuser, "He appeared to be somewhat unstable."

Added the judge, "There were a remarkable number of inconsistencies and exaggerations in his evidence."

Furthermore, the judge accepted Tejada's explanation that because the second accuser was HIV-positive, he would never have had sexual relations with him.

Said Kealey, "As the doctor explained, only a blood transfusion from an HIV-positive donor would be a greater risk of contracting the disease.

"I accept Dr. Tejeda's evidence that he did not do so."

Kilian Melloy serves as EDGE Media Network's Associate Arts Editor and Staff Contributor. His professional memberships include the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, the Boston Online Film Critics Association, The Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association, and the Boston Theater Critics Association's Elliot Norton Awards Committee.