6 physicians allege Yale promoted anesthesiologist despite sexual assault, harassment complaints

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A Yale University anesthesiologist accused of sexual assault and harassment by six female colleagues was promoted after those women reported his alleged behavior to school officials, according to a new lawsuit covered on myarklamiss.com.

Manuel Lopes Fontes, MD, was accused of engaging in forced and unwanted kissing, groping and retaliation on multiple occasions. His lawyer denied all the allegations.

Three of the plaintiffs reported the alleged behavior last summer, a spokeswoman for the New Haven, Conn., university told the Courier. They were reportedly offered resources under Title IX and given guidance on how to file a complaint with the university, though none chose to do so.

However, the plaintiffs alleged that Yale and Yale New Haven Hospital refused to discipline Dr. Fontes based on their sexual harassment complaints. Moreover, he was promoted to lead the anesthesia department's diversity and inclusion efforts, the lawsuit said.

Dr. Fontes was hired by Yale in 2015. He had allegedly left both Cornell University in Ithaca, N.Y., and Durham, N.C.-based Duke University amid sexual misconduct and harassment allegations.

"Dr. Fontes's sordid history of sexually harassing and acting inappropriately towards female subordinates ... is well known and documented," the lawsuit said. "Yet, Yale welcomed him with open arms, and he remains a distinguished leader within the anesthesiology department."

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