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Cedar Rapids doctor charged with sex exploitation of former patient
Doctor admitted to the offense, according to complaint
CEDAR RAPIDS — A Cedar Rapids doctor being sued for sexual exploitation and negligence by a former patient has now been charged with having sex with a former patient “who was emotionally dependent” on the doctor.
Scott James Piper, 51, a doctor with Piper Family Medicine, was charged Friday during an initial appearance with one count of sex exploitation by counselor/therapist, an aggravated misdemeanor.
Piper’s lawyer, Al Willett, appearing by video with his client from the Linn County Jail, asked for Piper to be released without on bail, but 6th Judicial Associate District Judge Russell Keast left the bail at $5,000. Piper was arrested on a warrant Wednesday, according to court records.
Keast also granted a protection order for the victim against Piper.
The complaint doesn’t identify the alleged victim as being the former patient who is suing Piper, but the incident in the criminal case occurred around the same time as the one described in the civil suit, Oct. 28, 2021.
According to the criminal complaint, the woman said Piper, who lives in Robins, had sex with her and/or engaged in sexual conduct with her at her Central City residence. She was a patient of his at the time.
The woman was receiving mental health services from Piper and was emotionally dependent upon him at the time. Piper also admitted to the offense, the complaint states.
In the lawsuit that was filed last week, the former patient accuses Piper of inappropriate sexual conduct and negligence over a two-year period in which he prescribed her drugs for anxiety, depression, attention deficit disorder, panic disorder and migraines.
The suit contends Piper “knew or had reason to know” that the patient, identified as “Jane Doe” in the suit, was significantly impaired in her ability to withhold consent of sexual conduct, and he failed to appropriately evaluate and treat her mental health conditions and substance use disorders.
The woman filed the lawsuit under the pseudonym Jane Doe to preserve her right to privacy because of the nature of the allegations, according to the suit.
Tim Semelroth, a Cedar Rapids lawyer not involved in the case, said filing a client under John/Jane Doe is allowed according to Iowa law. An attorney also would file a protected information disclosure form.
No complaints for Piper were found on the Iowa Board of Medicine website.
According to the lawsuit, Piper and Doe had sex between Oct. 27 and Oct. 28, 2021, at her residence. Later, court documents state, Piper told her in a Facebook message exchange that he wasn’t giving her more medications and that he thought it was better for her recovery if she received mental health care through Abbe Center or wherever her probation officer preferred.
Doe, in messages, appeared to be upset and accused Piper of having sex with other patients. She also accused him of using medication and other methods to control her, but he denied it.
In another Facebook message, Piper indicates he had a financial arrangement with Doe, who he said owed him money for rent he paid for her, according to the suit.
If convicted, he faces two years in prison. No arraignment is set at this time.
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