Florida doctor accused of using laughing gas to sexually assault 2 women

NAPLES, Fla. — A Southwest Florida cosmetic doctor is accused of sexually assaulting two women while they were sedated in a medical spa, authorities said.

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Eric Andrew Salata, 54, of Naples, was arrested Monday and charged with two counts of sexual battery to a physically helpless person, according to Collier County Sheriff’s Office online booking records.

According to the Naples Police Department, the two women, who are 51 and 73, were at Salata’s practice at the Pura Vida Medical Spa for a cosmetic procedure, the Naples Daily News reported.

The first victim told police she had a scheduled appointment on Oct. 22, WINK-TV reported. She said she was prescribed Alprazolam, a controlled substance, which she took before arriving at Salata’s office, according to WZVN-TV. The woman said she agreed to have nitrous oxide, known as laughing gas, administered during the procedure to supplement the Xanax and minimize her pain, the television station reported.

The woman told officers that said that while she was not “in her right mind,” she was aware of what was happening, the Daily News reported. According to court documents, the woman claimed that Salata touched her genital area.

The woman said she realized that Salata was allegedly fondling her during the procedure as the laughing gas wore off, the Miami Herald reported. She reported the incident to authorities, who began an investigation and conducted a sexual assault examination, according to the newspaper.

On Monday, the second victim came forward and said she experienced the same situation during her appointment at Salata’s office, the Daily News reported.

The woman told officers that she was awake and alert during the assault, which she said took no more than 15 seconds, according to court records.

A spokesperson at Salata’s office told the Daily News that questions should be directed to the doctor’s attorney, Donald Day.

Day did not return a request for comment. His secretary said he had a scheduled court hearing.

Salata has been practicing medicine since the 1990s, according to the Herald, He obtained a Florida medical license in 2013 and has had no disciplinary actions on his record, according to the Florida Department of Health. The newspaper said he has also had medical licenses in Maryland and Minnesota and has had no disciplinary actions nor malpractice lawsuits, according to state records.

Salata is scheduled to appear in court on Dec. 19, online records show.

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