State suspends accused chiropractor's license

Published: Mar. 9, 2011 at 2:52 PM EST|Updated: Mar. 19, 2011 at 1:52 PM EDT
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Shows in court Friday morning
Shows in court Friday morning
Shows' mugshot (Source: Lexington County Detention Center)
Shows' mugshot (Source: Lexington County Detention Center)
Shows leaves jail Wednesday
Shows leaves jail Wednesday

LEXINGTON COUNTY, SC (WIS) - After a judge said a West Columbia chiropractor accused of inappropriately touching three separate female patients' private parts could continue practicing, a state board said, not so fast.

The South Carolina Board of Chiropractic Examiners suspended 51-year-old Ronald Jeffery Shows' license Friday after a Lexington County judge granted the doctor $50,000 bond and the right to continue treating patients earlier that morning.

Shows was arrested Tuesday on arrest warrants on two counts of second-degree assault and battery. After bonding out of jail on Wednesday, he was arrested again Thursday afternoon on two more counts of second-degree assault and battery.

In court Friday morning, the judge set conditions for Shows' release, telling the chiropractor that he could continue practicing, but he must have a third party in the room when dealing with female patients.

The judge also ordered Shows not to have contact with the three patients who have accused him of assault.

Friday afternoon, the South Carolina Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation's chiropractic board temporarily suspended Shows from practice citing probable cause of misconduct.

Lexington County Sheriff James R. Metts said three women, ages 18, 23 and 35, went to the chiropractor's office at 2243-C Leaphart Road near West Columbia for therapeutic treatment.

According to an arrest warrant, on March 1, a 23-year-old Greer woman went to Shows' chiropractic office in order to seek therapeutic treatment for pain in her hip, Metts said. The 23-year-old woman told detectives that Shows directed her to remove all of her clothing, except her underwear, and put on a hospital gown.

Detectives say Shows then directed her to roll over on her back on an examination table.

The 23-year-old woman told detectives that Shows removed the hospital gown while she was on the examination table and touched her private parts in a manner that was not consistent with standard chiropractic therapeutic treatment, Metts said. The woman reported the incident to the Sheriff's Department on March 2.

A second arrest warrant alleges that in December 2010, a 35-year-old Irmo woman went to Shows' chiropractic office for therapeutic treatment, Metts said. The 35-year-old woman told detectives that Shows directed her to remove all of her clothing, except her underwear, and put on a hospital gown.

The 35-year-old woman told detectives that Shows told her to roll over on her back on an examination table, Metts said. The woman told detectives that Shows removed the hospital gown while she was on the examination table and touched her private parts in a manner that was not consistent with standard chiropractic therapeutic treatment. The woman reported the incident to the Sheriff's Department on March 4.

After learning about Shows' arrest, Metts said the 18-year-old woman contacted the Sheriff's Department on Wednesday and reported that Shows also had assaulted her at his chiropractic office.

The woman told detectives she went to Shows' chiropractic office on November 23, 2010 in order to receive an adjustment for medical problems that she was experiencing in her lower back, Metts said. Shows told the woman that she would need to remove her clothing before he could begin to examine her. The woman removed her shirt and bra and put on a hospital gown.

Arrest warrants allege that Shows removed the 18-year-old woman's hospital gown in order to expose her private parts, which Shows then inappropriately touched in a manner that was inconsistent with a necessary or recognized medical procedure, Metts said. Arrest warrants also allege that Shows unbuttoned the woman's pants and inappropriately touched her private parts.

The 18-year-old woman told detectives that Shows commented on her physique and told her that she was attractive, Metts said. The 23-year-old woman and 35-year-old woman told detectives that they endured similar experiences as the 18-year-old woman when Shows assaulted them at his chiropractic office.

Additional female patients have contacted the Sheriff's Department concerning Shows' inappropriate interactions with them at his chiropractic office, and detectives are actively investigating those cases, Metts said.

Metts asked anyone with information about additional incidents in which Shows interacted inappropriately with patients at his chiropractic office to contact the Lexington County Sheriff's Department at (803) 785-8230 or CrimeStoppers at 1-888-CRIME-SC.

Detectives reported Shows' arrest to the South Carolina Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation, which regulates chiropractors who conduct therapeutic treatment at offices in South Carolina, Metts said.

Under South Carolina law, second-degree assault and battery carries a maximum punishment of three years in prison and a $2,500 fine, Metts said.

Shows will not be able to practice until an order from the board of chiropractors reinstates his license.

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