ST. GEORGE — A St. George chiropractor was charged Thursday with inappropriately touching female patients and employees during exams.
Brent David Noorda, 39, of St. George, is charged in 5th District Court with 20 counts of forcible sexual abuse, a second-degree felony. At least four women have claimed they were abused by Noorda, according to charging documents.
Police noted that Noorda, of Balanced Healthcare, was the only chiropractor in the St. George area for a long time who specialized in a technique known as NUCCA, which focuses on head and neck pain.
An investigation began in July when several women contacted police about Noorda, “disclosing incidents of sexual misconduct conducted,” the charges state.
One woman who worked for Noorda said she was required at the end of each business day to go over numbers with him. But about a dozen times he inappropriately touched her until the woman eventually refused to meet with him, according to the charges.
The same woman also received treatment for head and neck issues from Noorda, but on at least three occasions he would massage her breasts while claiming to be working on shoulder muscles, the charges state.
“(The woman) said it made her uncomfortable, but he was her boss and a doctor, he was supposed to be someone she could trust,” investigators wrote in the charges.
A second woman also told investigators that Noorda would massage her breasts during appointments.
“He would say it was for medical reasons and he needed to loosen up the muscle,” the charges state.
Because Noorda was the only chiropractor in the St. George area who specialized in that technique, she kept going to him, according to charging documents. When she later saw a different chiropractor, she told police she “realized Brent was doing things outside” of normal procedures.
A third woman told investigators “she did not know if what Brent was doing was right or wrong. It made her feel uncomfortable, but he was a doctor and she was supposed to be able to trust him,” the charges state.
She, too, said Noorda would touch her under the guise of loosening muscles. But when she went to another chiropractor, she realized what he was doing was not necessary, the charges state.
A fourth woman reported similar encounters, according to charging documents.
“I conducted several interviews with other medical professionals from Brent’s workplace. They had all talked about Brent’s constant comments on his patients’ breasts as well as his employees’ breasts,” the investigating officer wrote in charging documents.
When interviewed by police, Noorda initially denied any wrongdoing, but later “admitted to conducting exams that he initially stated were outside the scope of his normal practices,” the charges state.
On Thursday, the Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing announced that Noorda, who has been licensed since 2009, has agreed to not practice as a chiropractor until the case against him is resolved.