Former Tigard doctor accused of sex abuse


Lawsuit claims man sexually abused a teenage Beaverton boy for years in the 1990s

A Beaverton man is suing a former Tigard doctor for allegedly sexually abusing him when he was a teenager.

A lawsuit filed in Multnomah County Circuit Court last month claims Raymond Martin Johnson, a former doctor and member of Beaverton Foursquare Church sexually abused a then-teenage boy in the 1990s, when Johnson volunteered at the church.

The lawsuit was filed by Portland attorney Kelly Clark on May 21. Clark's client, a Beaverton man known as M.D. in the lawsuit, said he was sexually abused while Johnson was a member of the Beaverton Fouresquare Church on Southwest Walker Road in the 1990s.

Johnson, now 80, was a longtime Tigard medical doctor, treating patients at Pacific Medical Group on Pacific Highway until his retirement in 2003.

According to the lawsuit, Johnson often held Bible studies and youth group parties at his home as a volunteer with the church and often had underage people at his home for church-approved activities and events.

'Time alone'

Johnson befriended M.D. and his family in 1992 or 1993, when M.D. was 12 or 13 years old, the lawsuit claimed. Johnson gained their trust and confidence and became a mentor to the boy.

The two spent "substantial periods of time alone" the lawsuit stated. And beginning when the boy was 15 or 16, Johnson reportedly began to abuse the boy, often fondling, hugging and kissing him in a sexual manner. The lawsuit alleges that Johnson propositioned the teen for sex and forced him to lay on top of him.

Often the abuse would be conducted immediately before, after, or on their way to or from church-approved activities and events, the lawsuit claimed.

Sometimes, the lawsuit stated, the abuse would occur during the events as well.

The abuse lasted years until the boy turned 18, the lawsuit said.

"The sexual touching, propositioning and harassing of a child by a trusted authority figure is beyond the bounds of all socially tolerable conduct," the lawsuit stated.

M.D., now 37, is asking for more than $1 million in damages, for "severe debilitating physical, mental and emotional injury, including pain and suffering, and permanent psychological damage."

No criminal charges are possible in this case, Clark said Tuesday, because the statute of limitations on the crime have passed.

In Oregon, sex abuse victims 17 and younger have until they turn 30 to report it to police or the Department of Human Services.

Since retiring from his practice nearly a decade ago, Johnson moved to Texas where he became involved in several community service organizations, including the World Affairs Council of South Texas.

Johnson's attorney Ted Brindle said, it was still early in the case to make a statement, but denied that his client had ever sexually abused minors.

"There will be a carte blanche denial that there was any inappropriate conduct with anyone under the age of 18," Brindle said in a phone interview from his Portland office on Tuesday.

Medical practice restrictions

Despite the denial, Johnson has a history of sexual abuse allegations stemming from his time as a doctor in Tigard.

In 1971, Johnson was placed on probation after he admitted to having sex with a 14-year-old boy from 1969 to 1970, according to the Oregon Medical Board of Examiners.

Johnson was taken off probation in 1977, after he underwent rehabilitation, but asked the board to put those restrictions back onto his license in 1980.

Under the restrictions, Johnson said he would not treat or examine any underage male patients without a staff member or parent to supervise, and that he would arrange his "personal commitments in such a manner as to eliminate continuous close contact" with underage boys.

He also agreed not to indulge in any act with minors which might be deemed an "act of sexual deviation," or make sexual advances to his patients.

Those restrictions were in place through the time of the alleged abuse and weren't removed until 2004, when Johnson surrendered his medical license after moving to Texas.

Now living in Corpus Christi, Texas, Johnson reportedly told local newspaper Corpus Christi Caller-Times that he was a changed man, and had stopped all unwanted contact with underage boys decades ago.

Accountability diffuses anger

Clark said someone making a conscious effort to change his or her behavior is rare.

"I almost never see that," said Clark, who has handled several sexual abuse cases in the past. "Where someone acknowledges a wrongdoing and decides to go in a different direction and clean up their past mistakes? That kind of stuff is much more helpful than people might imagine."

Clark said some people believe lawsuits like the one he filed are about winning money, but said it was about accountability.

"If Mr. Johnson made himself accountable and is doing what he needs to do to make sure that he doesn't do anything like this again, that really matters to victims and makes it easier to get some cases resolved," Clark said. "It can help diffuse the remaining anger a victim has."

No response has been filed by Johnson's lawyer, but Brindle said a response to the complaint would likely be filed within the next few days.