October 25, 2017 8:11 pm

Voyeurism, sex assault and child porn charges against orthodontist withdrawn

Criminal charges against the late Anthony Garry Solomon were formally withdrawn in a Belleville court today. The former Orthodontist was facing child pornography and voyeurism charges before he died two weeks ago. Even in his death the legal action against his estate will continue. Morganne Campbell explains.

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Charges laid against Anthony Garry Solomon, a retired Belleville Ont., orthodontist were withdrawn after the doctor died of natural causes on Oct. 5. However, details of the Crown’s case were read aloud in court by Hastings County Crown attorney Lee Burgess.

The Royal College of Dentists of Ontario received a complaint about the dentist, who was retired at the time the investigation began.

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Files were discovered in his former Belleville office, along with them were camcorder tapes which revealed voyeuristic videos of some of Solomon’s patients, some of whom were under the age of 18 at the time they were made.

Police seized 71 tapes in which it’s alleged the dentist filmed down the tops of female patients, their buttocks and crotch areas.

“On some occasions, he would zoom out the camera in order to videotape their chests and/or their crotch areas.  This could occur while they were standing, or while reclined in the dental chair. In some instances, the videotaping would start when the camera was pointed toward their crotches or breasts. The patients were all fully clothed,” explained Hastings County Crown Attorney Lee Burgess.

Investigators say they’ve identified 337 girls and women who were unknowingly videotaped, allegedly during appointments with Solomon. But they still need to identify 60 others.

“We can’t go about our lives living in fear but at the same time we can be cognizant and aware of our surroundings and if you feel uncomfortable and your gut tells you that something shouldn’t have happened you should probably get ahold of somebody,” said Belleville Police Inspector Chris Barry.

READ MORE: Pretrial date set for Ontario orthodontist who allegedly filmed patients

More than 250 of those voyeuristic videos were of patients under the age of 18. It’s believed the recordings date back to 1999 and became more frequent in the early 2000s through to 2014. Solomon was a solo practitioner at the time the videos were taken.

“The filming often taking place in the dental chair, the presence of the videos with his files and Solomon’s voice in the videos, there is little doubt that he was individual who created the videos,” said Burgess.

Solomon’s defence lawyer told the court that his client intended to fight the charges in an effort to vindicate himself before he died earlier this month.

“He died without any opportunity to review the evidence against himself and mount a defence,”  said defence lawyer Mathew Friedman.

Bonn Law has filed a class action lawsuit against Solomon’s estate. They’re seeking compensation for pecuniary (or financial) damages.

The claim was filed on Sept. 29 and so far locally, 60 victims have come forward another 50 in Toronto. Bonn Law enlisted the help of a Bay Street law firm in Toronto as this is the first class action the firm has ever filed.

READ MORE: Retired Belleville Orthodontist involved in a criminal case has died from cancer

“For some of the victims it’s affected them quite greatly to say that they’ve now lost trust in other medical professionals because of this experience,” explained Kris Bonn.

The suit could take years as it winds its way through the courts and Bonn Law would like to hear from anyone who wants to join the class action.

 

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