Former UF doctor charged with indecent assault in Pa.

As it appeared in the Gainsville Sun

By Cindy Swirko
The charges came after the girl and her family filed a civil suit against the doctor, who was director of critical care for the Geisinger Health System. The suit alleges he gnawed on the girl’s ear, licked her cheek and kissed her.

A former University of Florida doctor and medical professor who twice applied to become UF’s president was arrested in February on allegations he improperly touched a teenage volunteer at his Pennsylvania hospital.

Dr. Abraham Joseph Layon, 66, was charged by the Mahoning Township Police Department with indecent assault and harassment for allegedly subjecting the girl to physical contact, engaging in conduct with no legitimate purpose and using lewd or threatening language.

The charges came after the girl and her family filed a civil suit against Layon, who was director of critical care for the Geisinger Health System. The suit alleges he gnawed on the girl’s ear, licked her cheek and kissed her.

The attorney in that case plans to try to get records on Layon from UF.

Layon worked at UF from July 1983 to December 2017, when a courtesy appointment ended, according to UF officials.

Among his positions at UF was medical director and chief for Division of Critical Care Medicine at Shands, The Sun previously reported.

Layon twice applied to be UF president. The first time was in 2012 when then-President Bernie Machen said he was going to retire but reconsidered and stayed on the job. The second was in 2014 when Machen did retire. Kent Fuchs was selected for the post.

The Daily Item newspaper in Pennsylvania reported in March that the girl said during a court hearing that she volunteered to read to intensive care unit patients — Layton was head of the unit at the Danville, Pennsylvania, hospital. The alleged incident occurred when he called her into his office.

She said Layon closed the door and began kissing her, gnawing on her ear and putting his tongue down her throat, the paper reported.

“I kept pulling away,” she said. “I froze up. It wasn’t something I even thought would happen.”

Layon could not be reached for comment Tuesday. His attorney, Frank Nocito, said he does not comment on cases, but added that Layon entered a plea of not guilty Tuesday.

The law firm Fellerman & Ciarimboli in December filed a civil suit against Layon alleging the improper touching. It also alleges he encouraged the girl to read books with sexual content, including reading passages to him, and made sexually suggestive comments to her.

Attorney Ed Ciarimboli told The Sun Tuesday that he plans to subpoena records on Layon from UF.

Layon was fired by Geisinger and his medical license has been suspended by Pennsylvania.

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With more than 40 years of combined experience, the personal injury attorneys at Fellerman & Ciarimboli strive to provide the best service to clients in Philadelphia, Northeast Pennsylvania, and throughout the Keystone State.

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