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FL Man Offered Door-To-Door ‘Breast Exams’

October 14, 2011
Written by: , Filed in: Breast Imaging
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“Hello, ma’am. I’m a doctor, as you can see from my little black bag here, and I’m offering free door-to-door breast exams. May I come in, and would you please take off your shirt so we can get started?”

That’s more or less what Phillip Winikoff did, according to police. Winikoff, of Coconut Creek, Florida, was arrested in April 2006 and accused of going door to door at an apartment complex in Lauderdale Lakes, Florida, carrying a black bag and offering free breast exams.

According to a story earlier this week in the Fort Lauderdale Sun Sentinel:

Investigators said two women took Winikoff up on the offer, allowed him into their apartments and realized something was amiss only after the exams started.

Winikoff had faced eight charges, including two counts of practicing medicine without a license (shouldn’t that be “faking medicine without a license”?) and could have been sentenced to more than 55 years in prison.

Five and a half years after his arrest, he finally had reached a deal with prosecutors, and he was supposed to enter a plea of either guilty or no contest earlier this week. But his lawyer and the prosecutor showed up late, the judge had a trial to conduct, and the pleading was postponed. No information on the proposed deal, including whether Winikoff, now 81, would avoid prison, was available.

According to the Sun Sentinel:

The first victim, 36 at the time, told detectives he started the exam by fondling her breasts, and she knew something was wrong when his hands wandered elsewhere.

The newspaper took the opportunity to make a couple of serious points:

  • No legitimate medical practitioner or social-services agency sends unaccompanied men door to door offering services or asking to enter anyone’s home.
  • Even for people who are uninsured, and thus more vulnerable to scams promising free care, there are legitimate options available for free health care through local health departments and other agencies and health-care providers.

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Related seminar: Breast & Women’s Imaging Seminar


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