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HOSPITAL EMPLOYEE CHARGED IN SEXUAL ASSAULT AT JAIL

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Thursday, December 16, 2010— Bond as been set at $300,000 for a Cook County hospital employee who convinced a male detainee he needed a medical procedure and instead used that situation to sexually assault the man, Cook County Sheriff Thomas J. Dart announced Thursday.

Alphonzo HillAlphonzo Hill, 45, of Calumet City, is charged with criminal sexual assault, custodial sexual misconduct and official misconduct – all felonies – as a result of an investigation by the Sheriff’s Office of Professional Review, an independent internal affairs unit Dart established to investigate crimes involving those working for or with the sheriff’s office.

Hill worked as an emergency medical technician at Cermak Hospital, which is on the jail grounds but part of the Cook County Health and Hospitals Systems. Cermak allows EMTs to interact with detainees for minor medical issues, including dispensing of medication in jail divisions. Additionally, EMTs are often assigned to dispensary rooms in each jail division, where they perform blood pressure checks and other routine health exams. Any interaction with doctors or procedures that would require privacy are only conducted at Cermak Hospital.

In May, Hill was in a minimum-security jail dispensary room with a 46-year-old male detainee who was there for routine care. During that visit, Hill told the man his doctor ordered him to undergo a more detailed medical examination. Though Hill was not authorized nor licensed to carry out this exam, Hill told the man he could do it during that visit.

During that exam, the victim realized Hill was not performing the exam, but was instead sexually assaulting him. The victim immediately stopped Hill and left the room, then alerted a correctional officer. That officer immediately notified jail and hospital supervisors. Though Hill denied the accusations, DNA evidence later revealed evidence of an assault.

Hill appeared in bond court at 26th and California today. His next court date is set for Jan. 4. Hospital officials said Hill has been suspended since the investigation began.

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