The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

March 20, 2014

Pain clinic, physician sued by former patient

By Wendy Holdren
Register-Herald Reporter

— A Nicholas County woman has filed a lawsuit against a Beaver pain clinic and the practicing physician, alleging she was sexually harassed, assaulted and battered.

Kathy Ellen Dillon accused John Henry Pellegrini, with the Hope Clinic, of rubbing his penis against her back and legs during her examination in October 2012.

The complaint said when Dillon went to report Pellegrini’s behavior to a counselor at the clinic the following month, she was told Pellegrini no longer worked there.

Pellegrini was put on probation by the West Virginia Board of Osteopathic Medicine in March 1999, but that probation was lifted in June 2001.

After reviewing allegations of unprofessional and unethical conducted in November 2012, the WVBOM found probable cause and suspended his license.

The allegations were “repeated acts of unethical exercise of influence within a doctor-patient relationship for the purpose of engaging a patient in sexual activity.”

According to the WVBOM website, Pellegrini’s license status is “expired” and his controlled substance license has been expired since his November 2012 suspension.

Dillon is claiming she suffered substantial emotional and mental distress, humiliation, anxiety, embarrassment, aggravation, annoyance and inconvenience.

She is being represented by Matthew S. Criswell and Mark L. French of the Charleston law firm Criswell French Condaras.

She is seeking compensatory damages in an amount to be determined by a jury. Attorneys said the case will be ready for trial in February 2015.

Attempts to contact Pellegrini on Wednesday were unsuccessful.

— E-mail: wholdren@register-herald.com