Rebecca Quilliam

Rebecca Quilliam is senior reporter at the APNZ News Service office in Wellington.

Osteopath found guilty of 15 sex charges

Gisborne osteopath Richard James Davis in the dock in the High Court at Wellington. Photo / Mark Mitchell
Gisborne osteopath Richard James Davis in the dock in the High Court at Wellington. Photo / Mark Mitchell

An osteopath has been found guilty of 15 sex and indecency offences against female patients by a jury in the High Court at Wellington.

Richard Davis, 53, of Katikati, faced 24 charges relating to complaints by 10 women who visited his Gisborne practice - 11 of unlawful sexual connection and 13 of indecent assault.

The sexual violation charges related to allegations by some of the women that Davis performed invasive acts on them during treatment.

He was found guilty of eight sexual connection charges and seven indecent assault charges.

The trial before Justice David Collins lasted two weeks.

The jury of seven women and five men retired to consider their decision about 11.30am yesterday. They delivered their unanimous decisions about 2.30pm.

Davis stood still with no expression as the verdicts were read out.

He also received a first warning under the "three strikes'' legislation and was remanded in custody until his sentencing next month.

The Crown's case was that Davis' behaviour showed a pattern of offending. He told all 10 women he was performing clinical treatments and all were asked to remove their underwear, or had it removed, before Davis sexually assaulted them.

The Crown also said techniques he used were not legitimate osteopathic techniques.

The defence had argued that some patients were confused about his treatment, in some cases inappropriate touching was accidental and some complainants were wrong.

- APNZ

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