Ex-psychiatrist admits forcibly kissing, groping patients

CHULA VISTA, Calif. — A former San Diego psychiatrist pleaded guilty Monday a felony charge of having sexual contact with seven female patients during office visits and a misdemeanor count of sexual battery for groping an eighth woman.

Leon Fajerman, 75, who operated a longtime practice out of offices in El Cajon, San Diego and Chula Vista, will be ordered to serve 365 days in custody and be required to register as a sex offender at a sentencing hearing Jan. 18. Judge Francis Devaney will consider alternatives to actual jail time, according to Deputy District Attorney Carolyn Matzger.

Fajerman, who has been a licensed physician in California since 1978, voluntarily surrendered his medical license in May, state records show.

According to documents filed with the Medical Board of California, seven female patients and the mother of a child he was treating accused him of forcibly kissing and groping them between the fall of 2016 and the summer of 2017.

Fajerman pleaded guilty to felony sexual exploitation by a psychotherapist and misdemeanor sexual battery.