DECATUR, Ga. (CN) – An HIV-positive resident physician at the Emory University hospital system had “sexual contact” with a teen-ager and other children, and used the hospital’s computers to solicit his prey and expose them to child pornography, an alleged victim claims in DeKalb County Court.
The case is a refiling of a lawsuit brought by plaintiff Cody Alexander Smith, which was dismissed without prejudice in November 2010.
Smith says he first came in contact with Adam Wayne Lebowitz, a medical resident in the Emergency Medicine Department of Emory University Hospital, in October 2006 when Lebowitz contacted through the Internet and solicited him for sex.
That very evening, Lebowitz showed up at the home Smith shared with his parents, “and forced the plaintiff to leave the plaintiff’s resident and enter into sexual contact with defendant Lebowitz, who is HIV positive,” according to the complaint.
Smith says he was “a minor child” at the time, but the complaint does not state whether he still is a minor. He says Lebowitz today is locked up in the federal prison in Marion, Ill.
Smith claims that Lebowitz continued to prey upon him, initiating contact through computers at defendants Emory Clinic, Emory Hospital and Emory Healthcare.
“At all times relevant herein, plaintiff could not and did not voluntarily or freely consent to said sexual contacts, but he was coerced and otherwise forced against his will by defendant Lebowitz to engage in such contacts,” Smith claims.
He adds that “Lebowitz’s actions evinced a specific intent to cause physical and emotional harm to the plaintiff.”
Smith says that “to gain the confidence of the minor children, defendant Lebowitz would offer the minor children to ‘shadow’ him at the location of defendant Emory University.”
The complaint adds: “At all time relevant herein, defendant Lebowitz solicited and lured plaintiff as a minor child and other minor children for the purposes of engaging in illegal sexual acts and/or sexual contacts through defendant Emory’s computers and electronic equipment, including but not limited to, electronic mail, on-line services, the Internet, and etc. while working as a medical resident in the Emergency Medicine Department on the campus of defendant Emory University. Defendant Lebowitz also used defendant Emory’s computer communication system, including but not limited to, online service, Internet service, etc., to explicitly discuss and depict actual nudity, sexual acts, sexual contact and other sexual performances to plaintiff and other minor children.”
Smith claims Emory was at best negligent in hiring Lebowitz, who allegedly had “a prior history of sexual misconduct involving minor children during his employment and education at various universities and colleges, including but not limited to, Boston University, University of San Francisco, St. Joseph’s University, and Stetson University. After investigating and evaluating defendant Lebowitz’s application and background, defendant Emory University knew or should have known that Defendant Lebowitz had a prior history of sexual misconduct and illegal use of computers involving minor children.”
Smith also claims the university failed to follow its own policies and procedures regulating use of its computers and scanning and filtering the activity that could be carried out on them.
Smith seeks punitive and compensatory damages and continuing medical expenses for intentional infliction of emotional distress, vicarious and/or imputed liability, sexual assault, sexual battery, assault and battery, unlawful imprisonment, negligent hiring, supervision and retention, educator-student liability, violation of the Child Protection and Obscenity Enforcement Act and the Child Protection and Sexual Predator Act.
He is represented by Lisa R. Reeves of Newnan, Ga.