Andrew Mollenbeck, wtop.com
WASHINGTON – Baltimore police say more than 2,000 women have called a hotline set up for patients of a Johns Hopkins gynecologist suspected of secretly recording exams and later killing himself.
At least 100 potential victims have also called a hotline for counseling service.
“People have expressed a range of emotional reactions,” says Gail Reid, the director of victim advocacy at Turnaround, which provides counseling and support services to victims or rape, incest and domestic violence.
“We have heard very profound sadness and anger — people feel confused and shocked,” she says.
Dr. Nikita Levy, 54, was found dead in his Towson home Feb. 18. Police and Johns Hopkins have said he committed suicide. The Maryland medical examiner’s office ruled that asphyxiation was the cause of death.
Police have said the Johns Hopkins doctor used a pen camera to make some of the recordings and computer servers were found at his Towson home. Baltimore Police Department spokesman Anthony Guglielmi says police are investigating whether the images were posted to the internet but would not say whether investigators have found if that happened.
The case has also prompted a class action suit against Johns Hopkins Hospital and a clinic where Levy worked.
As the list of potential victims grows, counselors are responding to needs from Baltimore to West Virginia. This week, three groups of patients will begin meeting in person, two in Baltimore and the other in Towson.
“Some people have expressed an interest in being part of a group specifically for those women who were impacted by this,” Reid says.
Others are content to speak by phone or find counselors near their home.
Reid says the secret recordings really hit some patients hard.
“This doctor was very important to them, like a father figure,” she says. “Many women saw him for a long time. He delivered many of their children.”
Police have set up a hotline to connect with potential victims. That number is 410-396-2269.
Johns Hopkins says it has set up a call center for Levy’s patients and the hospital is conducting its own investigation. The call center number is 855-546- 3785.
Counseling services are also available from an organization dedicated to treating victims of sexual assaults and domestic violence. That number is 443-279-0379.
Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press and WTOP. All Rights Reserved.