Former doctor at Walter Reed charged with child sex abuse

SILVER SPRING, Md. (WUSA9) -- Montgomery County police have arrested a former military doctor who served at the high-profile Walter Reed Army Medical Center before its closure and charged him with decades-old sexual abuse against young relatives.

Police said 83-year-old Leslie Boyd Altstatt abused three female victims at various times between 1964 and 1981 and may have had access to other children at his work.

"He was a pediatrician and researcher at the former Walter Reed Medical Center located in Washington, D.C.," Montgomery County Police spokeswoman Rebecca Innocenti said in a WUSA9 interview Monday. "Obviously, with his access to children, we are concerned there may be additional victims."

But speaking outside Altstatt's Silver Spring home, attorney Richard Vinci emphatically denied his client worked as a pediatrician at Walter Reed or saw patients there.

"He was never in a pediatrician position at Walter Reed Hospital. He was a medical researcher," Vinci told reporters Monday evening.

Further, Vinci said he was "utterly shocked and appalled by the inhumane treatment," of Altstatt at the time of his Friday arrest. Altstatt is in home hospice care and was removed from his bed, Vinci said, and booked at the county jail.

Altstatt's mugshot shows him wearing an oxygen tube. He has been released on bond. A preliminary hearing on the felony case is scheduled for May 23rd.

In late February 2014, police say they were notified by the three victims who said they were sexually abused by Altstatt when they were younger. One victim reported that her abuse occurred between the ages of six to 15 and that she was abused "hundreds of times," a detective wrote in the charging documents.

The investigator closed the narrative in that particular case by writing, "When approached about the sexual abuse, Leslie Altstatt admitted he knew what he did was wrong, and he was sorry."

"I don't know what that refers to," attorney Vinci responded. Altstatt, he said, "will certainly plead not guilty when the opportunity presents itself. I hope that he survives to stand trial."

Altstatt has been charged with five counts of committing a third degree sex offense, child abuse, and six counts of committing an unnatural and perverted sex practice.

A spokesperson for Walter Reed said they are aware of the allegations and would not comment on an active investigation.

Anyone who feels that he/she was victimized by Altstatt is asked to contact the Family Crimes Division at 240-773-5400.

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