A physiotherapist who exposed his manhood to a nurse was cleared of misconduct after he insisted it was just everyday ‘banter about penis sizes’.
Anthon Ranjit-Singh admitted he opened the top of his jogging bottoms in front of his shocked colleague and said: ‘I bet you’ve never seen a big black one like this before.’
Giving evidence the woman, known only as Miss A, said she tried to laugh it off and told Ranjit-Singh: ‘I’ve seen it all before, I’m a nurse.”
She claimed he then undid her blouse, bit her nipple and put his hands down her knickers.
But Ranjit-Singh insisted everything that went on at the Basildon and Thurrock University Hospital, Billericay, Essex on October 15, 2007, was consenual.
And he described it as ‘like two 16-year-olds fumbling around for the first time’ and today a panel of the Health Professions Council cleared him of misconduct.
HPC chairman Mr Alexander Yule said the question for the panel was whether his actions were consensual.
‘The only witness who gave direct evidence of absence of consent was Miss A herself.
‘The issue was for the HPC to prove.
‘In the circumstances the panel finds that lack of consent was not proved.’
Mr Yule said this left only the issue of whether the facts amounted to misconduct.
‘Having given the issue its independent consideration, the panel finds the allegation made against Mr Ranjit-Singh require as an essential element that the events occurred without Miss A’s consent.
‘It must follow therefore that misconduct has not been established.’
Mr Yule acknowledged such a finding ‘might seem somewhat surprising’, but said a lack of consent was intrinsic to the charges alleged.
As a result individual allegations Ranjit-Singh faced, relating to sexual contact, were never found proved or disproved.
The HPC heard how Ranjit-Singh and Miss A were both working at the Basildon and Thurrock University Hospital, Billericay, Essex on October 15, 2007.
They had been discussing relationships when he suggested they continue the conversation in his office.
Ms A said: ‘I didn’t want to go because I had work to do.
‘I thought he was being kind and I didn’t want to offend him.’
On entering Ranjit-Singh flipped the door lock and plonked himself next to her.
He then leant forward and put his arms around her.
‘I thought it was a bit strange but he wouldn’t let go.’
Kissing her, Miss A said it was difficult not to respond ‘when someone’s got their hand around the back of your head.
‘His other hand was running over my backside.
‘He then undid his trousers.’
Miss A made a complaint the following day and Ranjit-Singh resigned before bosses could ask for his account.
She insisted to the HPC that he had ‘crossed the line’ adding: ‘He’s excellent at what he does professionally. I don’t bear any animosity to him and I don’t wish him any harm.
‘I just felt he crossed the line. Sometimes what you do to somebody to cheer them up can have a devastating effect.’
Giving evidence, Ranjit-Singh accepted the allegations sounded ‘sordid’ but he said it all happened ‘in real time, between two consenting adults, it was a normal sort of thing you do’.
‘Yes it is unprofessional as it was in the work place but that’s how it happened.
Ranjit-Singh admitted he asked the nurse if she had ever seen a ‘brown penis’.
He said: ‘We carried on the conversation and we entered into a bit of banter about penises and penis sizes.
‘At that time it seemed appropriate in what was happening between us.
‘I was being a bit egotistical at that time and I asked her if she had ever seen a brown penis before.
‘At that stage it was inside my trousers. She was fine about it and bantered back ”oh yes, I’ve seen them all”.
‘I was being a bit egotistical and actually showed her just through the top of my tracksuit bottoms. I didn’t pull them down in any way.
‘I said do you think it’s big and she replied by saying ”yes, you know it’s big”, something along those lines.’
‘We hugged, we kissed, we both felt embarrassed about it,’ he said.
‘I think I described it like two 16-year-olds fumbling around for the first time,’ he added.
‘It got to the stage where nothing was going to happen and it just stopped.’
The physiotherapist had denied misconduct or that his fitness to practise is impaired.