Doctor Says Hospital Beat & Ruined Him
ST. LOUIS (CN) - A doctor who asked for leave to fulfill his obligations to the National Guard claims Barnes-Jewish Hospital officials forced him out of its residency program, had security guards beat him twice, had him thrown into mental hospitals and falsely claimed he had made threats against the government and worshiped Osama bin Laden.
Oladimeji Jacobs Alade, D.O., sued Barnes-Jewish Hospital, of St. Louis, the BJC Health System, and Nuri Farber, the hospital's director of residency training, in City Court.
Alade, who was a 2nd lieutenant in the New Jersey National Guard, claims the trouble started when he requested leave from the Barnes-Jewish Psychiatric Residency Program in February 2009 to attend to his military obligations.
Alade claims Farber called his request "unprofessional" and started a campaign to discredit him. He claims Farber made numerous allegations about his professionalism, which led to Alade's forced resignation from the program, effective July 11, 2011.
Alade says he went to his office, dressed in his military uniform, on July 8, 2011 to pack his belongings.
"While in his office, plaintiff heard a loud banging on the door, and when he opened the door, he saw a large contingency of BJH security people with their guns drawn and pointed at him," the complaint states.
It continues: "The BJH security asked plaintiff: 'are you armed?' Plaintiff replied in the negative, and the BJH security personnel stated that plaintiff would be placed under arrest because according to the information they received from plaintiff's department he had been terminated 'weeks ago.' Plaintiff told the BJH security personnel that they must have been misinformed because plaintiff's contract with BJH lasted until July 11, 2011.
"The BJH security personnel stated that they would call the police; plaintiff agreed and sat down on his chair, with his hands visibly behind his head, and he crossed his legs visibly on the desk in front of him. Plaintiff was sitting calmly and waiting for police to arrive.
"Immediately thereafter someone among the BJH security personnel yelled: 'take him down' and the entire contingency of the BJH security personnel descended on plaintiff and beat him until he started going in and out of consciousness.
"The BJH security personnel stripped plaintiff naked, removed his military boot, held him against his will, confiscated his personal belongings, including his personal laptop and his flash drive.
"During the beating by the BJH and/or BJC security personnel, plaintiff developed chest pains, hyperventilated and experienced a syncope episode. Although the emergency department was a couple of flights downstairs, BJH security personnel instead took plaintiff to an outside hospital, which was miles away, in violation of the Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act."
Alade claims the security staff falsely told emergency room workers that he has a history of schizophrenia. He says that led to his being transferred against his will from the John Cochran VA Hospital to St. Louis University Hospital for psychological evaluation.
He says he was released around 7 a.m. on July 9. Later that day, Alade says, he returned to Barnes-Jewish Hospital with his brother to retrieve his laptop and other personal items that had been confiscated the night before. But the defendants told him that those items were with investigative services and would not be returned.
Alade says that he and his brother were confronted in the hospital parking lot by BJC security as they tried to leave.
"As can be seen in the [surveillance] video, in spite of plaintiff's attempt to be civil and cooperative, plaintiff was again assaulted, beaten up, sustaining serious physical injuries including but not limited to head trauma, and other psychological and emotional trauma caused from experiencing two assaults and batteries within twenty-four hours at a hospital which plaintiff had worked for three years," the complaint states.
"After the beating on July 9, 2011, plaintiff was seized, handcuffed and dragged to the security center of BJH against his will, even though he was bleeding and in serious pains from various injuries that were inflicted on him by the BJH security personnel."
Alade says he was charged with six counts of third-degree assault on eight to 10 security guards and was taken against his will to St. Alexius Hospital, where he was held in a padded room for 12 to 14 hours.
The prosecutor dropped the assault charges after watching the tape, the complaint states, but Alade's legal troubles continued after BJC officials falsely claimed he had made threats against the U.S. government and the U.S. Army.
"More specifically, BJH and/or BJC falsely told federal authorities that plaintiff said he worships Osama bin Laden and that the Fort Hood Army Major Hassan is his hero," the complaint states. "Plaintiff made no such statements, and BJH and/or BJC completely fabricated this allegation maliciously in an attempt to damage plaintiff's military career."
The accusations triggered an investigation by the FBI and Department of Defense. Even though Alade was eventually cleared of all charges, the records of his arrests and the investigation are a permanent part of his military file, the complaint states.
"As a direct and proximate cause of defendants' actions, plaintiff lost his job and when he applied to other schools to complete his psychiatric residency, defendants blocked his acceptance into other psychiatric residency programs," the complaint states. "Plaintiff, then, has been unable to practice medicine or find another form of employment.
"Defendants' outrageous, false, and malicious attempt to label plaintiff mentally ill greatly diminished plaintiff's reputation in the medical community, military community, and with his neighbors and friends."
Alade seeks punitive damages for assault, battery, false imprisonment, slander, libel, injurious falsehood, invasion of privacy, intentional interference with business expectancy, malicious prosecution, civil conspiracy and intentional infliction of emotional distress.
He is represented by Andrew Ucheomumu of Bethesda, Md.