SINGAPORE — A clinic nurse manager at a private clinic is accused of molesting a male patient who was recovering on a hospital bed following an endoscopy.
Ivan Lee Yi Wang, 32, claimed trial on Monday (22 February) to two charges of allegedly molesting the man by stroking his private parts twice while the man was sleeping on a bed after his procedure on 31 October 2018.
The alleged victim, then 26, cannot be named to protect his identity.
Lee was then a clinic nurse manager at the private clinic located at Mount Elizabeth Novena Hospital. He handled administrative duties, such as scheduling patient appointments and assisting in dispensing medication.
Taking the stand on Monday, the victim, testified that he met Lee thrice at the clinic starting from September or October 2018 due to stomach issues.
The first time, Lee allegedly took down the victim’s personal details to register him in the clinic.
On 18 October 2018, the victim said he received a message from Lee, asking about a follow-up appointment at the clinic.
When questioned how he had reacted to the text, the victim said, “I thought it strange cause it was coming from a personal number.” He added that he called the clinic’s landline directly to arrange an appointment instead, and did not respond to Lee’s text.
When Deputy Public Prosecutor Stacey Anne Fernandez asked the victim about why the text was "strange", the latter replied, “I don’t think they (clinic staff) are supposed to use their personal number to contact patients directly, hence I thought it was quite out of the norm.”
According to the man, he next met Lee when the latter gave him a briefing on how to prepare for his endoscopy, which was fixed for 31 October 2018.
On the day of the appointment, Lee briefed the victim again while they were in the ward. The victim was then sedated for the procedure.
He recalled that after he woke in bed to the sensation of his penis being stroked multiple times. He then saw a flashlight from what he believed to be a mobile phone pointing towards him and a man dressed in a white shirt and dark trousers. CCTV footage played in court captured Lee clad in a white shirt and dark-coloured trousers in the clinic.
Asked if he said anything then, the victim said he did not. "I think I was in shock and I just wanted it to stop and continue to rest," he said.
"I was wondering what had happened...but I didn’t call out for the nurse yet so I turned on my back and continued to rest."
Later, the man again woke up to the same sensation and felt a gush of cold air. He saw that his gown had been lifted to his chest area and the man clad in the same clothes was molesting him again. A flashlight was again pointed at him.
When the alleged victim asked the alleged perpetrator what he was doing, the latter moved his hand from his penis to touch his stomach area. The perpetrator then asked the victim, "Is your stomach okay?"
The victim alerted the nurses at the endoscopy ward about what happened and two nurses attended to him. A doctor later attended to him and said he would speak to Lee and "tell him to be upfront".
The victim recalled, "(The doctor) told me it's up to my own decision to make a police report, but he said this sort of issue should keep it on the low. It felt like he was just trying to protect himself and his clinic."
The doctor reassigned a new clinic nurse to handle the victim's discharge procedure. The nurse came down to the victim's ward, showed him Lee's phone gallery, and said that there was nothing there.
According to the victim, the nurse asked him if he was sure he saw a phone and flashlight, suggesting that the nurses were too busy to take pictures on their phone, and that the light came from a blood pressure (BP) machine.
Said the victim, "I felt accused and I asked her if she was trying to accuse me of saying something that didn’t happen. I also noted down that it couldn’t be from the BP machine because the BP machine was at same level as my head... no way the (light) could be pointed at me."
The victim also spoke to security officers about the alleged incident. He later called his father and was advised to "note down everything" and call the police. The victim then recorded down the details of the alleged act in the notes application in his phone. These were read out in court.
After the victim was discharged, at around 2.16pm, he was brought down to level one of the hospital where he spoke to two police officers.
According to the prosecution, the nurses on duty will testify that the Lee had no reason to be in the victim's room while he was recovering as he had not been called to attend to the patient's discharge. Doctors will be called to testify that Lee's job never involved any physical contact or physical examination of patients.
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