Four years after being sexually assaulted in a hospital room, Jemeena Grimes has sued North Shore Medical Center. NBC 6's Ari Odzer reports.
Jemeena Grimes says four years after she was sexually assaulted in a hospital room, she's still traumatized by the experience.
"I was in complete shock, still am, just don't believe it happened," Grimes said Thursday.
When Grimes checked into North Shore Medical Center in September 2010, she never thought a physician's assistant would take advantage of her sedated state to rape her.
"I didn't know what to do, I froze, I was scared to death, I didn't know what to do, I couldn't believe it was happening, I thought I was dreaming at first but it was very real. I was so sedated I couldn't even move, I could barely speak," grimes said.
Grimes filed suit against the hospital Wednesday. She is coming out publicly about the assault now hoping that her lawsuit sends a message about patient security to all hospitals.
Her lawyer, Jeff Herman, said North Shore clearly failed to protect his client.
"They're supposed to have security in place and rules in place that don't allow men to walk in unfettered, having access to women in these sedated states," Herman said.
But what if the man is a nurse or physician's assistant, and does have natural access to patients?
"Well this man had no business going in there, shutting the curtains and being alone with this woman," Herman said, pointing out that most hospital protocols call for a witness to be present if a man is examining or treating a woman.
Grimes says she thought she was going to die.
"Absolutely terrified, that's what I actually thought, I thought he was gonna finish the assault and put his hand over my face or something, I was scared, and couldn't do anything about it," Grimes said.
But Grimes was smart enough to preserve the evidence, and police used it to arrest and convict the attacker, David Wand.
Her lawyer still has one unanswered question.
"How is it that after this man was arrested he was allowed back in the hospital and had access to my client's room? He literally walked into her room even after she told police and they arrested him!" Herman said.
The hospital released a statement, saying, "Mr. Wand was a licensed physician assistant employed by an independent physician, not by North Shore Medical Center. During the time he practiced at the hospital, we had no knowledge of allegations of inappropriate conduct involving Mr. Wand. When allegations were received about Mr. Wand, he was restricted from hospital property, and he no longer has privileges to practice at our hospital. The safety of our patients is paramount and we take such allegations very seriously.”