Woman claims phony physical therapist molested her

David Yates Nov. 7, 2007, 5:00am

Bill Coffey

A Beaumont duo is alleging a local rehabilitation center negligently hired an unqualified physical therapist, who has been accused of making "offensive physical contact" with a patient.

Lacresha and Geary Seniguar Jr. are suing Neches Rehabilitation and Testing Inc., doing business as Health & Medical Practice Associates, claiming its owners/employees negligently hired Marc Sterling. Lacresha Seniguar alleges Sterling molested her.

The plaintiffs' original petition was filed with the Jefferson County District Court on Nov. 5. The suit also names Huy Le and Robert and Darlene O'Neal as defendants.

"Sterling acted intentionally or knowingly in making contact with the plaintiff's person when the defendant knew…plaintiff would regard the contact as offensive or provocative," the suit said. "Furthermore, the defendant's contact caused injury to the plaintiff in that plaintiff suffered personal indignity and thereby mental anguish by the defendant's actions."

As to the remaining defendants, the suit says they owed a legal duty to Lacresha to hire, supervise, train and retain competent employees. "Further…defendants were required to make an inquiry into the competence and qualifications of defendant."

The suit also accuses the defendants of negligent misrepresentation, saying that the rehab office represented to Lacresha that Sterling "was a physical therapist when in fact he was not."

"(Lacresha) justifiably relied upon the misrepresentations made by the defendants…," the suit said. "Further, your plaintiffs plead the cause of action of intentional infliction of emotional distress. (Lacresha) was…molested by the defendant."

Geary Dwight Seniguar Jr. is suing for loss of consortium. Both plaintiffs are suing for general, special and exemplary damages.

They are represented by attorney William Coffey Jr. of the Coffey & Browne law firm.

Judge Gary Sanderson, 60th Judicial District, has been assigned to the case.

Case No. B180-708

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