Woman Claims Fondling by Physical Therapist
TRI-CITIES, Wash. - A KNDU viewer heard the story about the Tri-Cities physical therapist that has been suspended after being accused of inappropriately touching patients and said she was also a victim.
The Washington State Board has suspended Rafat Shirinzadeh. In documented papers he was cited in eight different situations. Victims say it happened at the Oasis Physical Therapy and Sports Rehab.
The latest victim, who did not want to be identified, said she was violated three years ago when she was 19. She said she hurt her back working as a care giver. She said it was the first time she had ever gone to physical therapy for back problems.
During her visit she claimed Shirinzadah touched her breasts inappropriately. She said she felt uncomfortable and could not understand why he was touching her breasts when she came there for her back.
She said she never contacted authorities because she was unfamiliar with physical therapy and was not sure if the touching was normal procedure but after the session she said she felt disgusted and never went back.
She said, "He kept talking about his wife and his kids, but he kept massaging my breasts. I didn't know if it was normal. It didn't feel normal ... just felt horrible. I felt violated. I couldn't believe it."
Official documents from the Washington Department of Health site 8 different claims against Shirinzadeh. The reports accuse him of his touching patients private parts, unwanted sexual comments, and massaging patients' private areas.
KNDU has talked to Shirinzadeh and he said the accusations are unfounded and said he is innocent.
The alleged victim said she would support anyone who claimed to have been violated and plans on contacting the Department of Health in the near future. She said she felt angry when she heard the news report about the claims and had to speak out.