Chiropractor's abrupt plea ends rape trial Larry Turetsky was given seven to 20 years behind bars for attacks on seven women in his office.

Posted: June 10, 2004

After listening to wrenching emotional testimony from two of his seven victims, Northeast Philadelphia chiropractor Larry Turetsky abruptly ended his trial yesterday and pleaded guilty to the series of attacks in his office.

"I apologize to the people I have hurt. I spent more years learning and helping the community than I have hurting [the victims]," Turetsky told the judge, as the women shook their heads or gasped at his roundabout remorse.

"I want to move on," said Turetsky, 33, of the 700 block of Bargate Court in Upper Southampton.

In a quiet voice, he said "guilty" seven times to charges of rape, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, two counts of aggravated assault, and three counts of indecent assault.

Common Pleas Court Judge Eugene Maier immediately sentenced Turetsky to seven to 20 years in prison, to be followed by 55 years of probation. Maier also ordered Turetsky to pay a $25,000 fine, to be divided among the seven women.

Later this summer, Turetsky will be subjected to another court hearing to determine whether he should be classified a sexually violent predator under Megan's Law.

Each of the women came to Turetsky's Bustleton Avenue office between March 2002 and May 2003 for massages, employment or training to become massage therapists in his practice.

The victim who was raped told the judge: "This happened about two years ago, but it's still something I think about every day of my life. . . . I'll never be the same person."

The woman, who is now attending a police academy in another state, testified that the attack deeply affected the way she looked at all men, including potential boyfriends, other doctors and even her own father.

"I couldn't look at any male the same, because I couldn't trust anybody," she said through tears.

Another victim, a 29-year-old whiplash patient, testified Tuesday during the first day of the jury trial that her massage appointment with Turetsky ended in a violent struggle after she caught him surreptitiously taking photographs of her naked buttocks. The woman fled with the camera. One of those photographs was presented to the jury.

During the massage, she said, Turetsky brushed his fingers against her genital area several times, quickly enough that at first she thought it was an accident.

Her report to police prompted other victims to come forward, Assistant District Attorney James Carpenter said.

"I'm glad that I was finally the person to bring this out," she said yesterday, after Turetsky pleaded guilty.

Carpenter told the judge: "This defendant is a sophisticated and serial sexual offender. . . . There are seven different victims, seven different lives, that have been deeply, deeply affected."

Defense lawyer Marc Neff told the judge that Turetsky had no prior criminal record, and had a supportive mother and wife, and a baby at home.

"He is certainly remorseful for the situation he has created, and for the pain he has caused these young ladies," Neff told the judge.

Later, Neff told reporters: "Dr. Turetsky came to a decision in his own mind that he needed to spare these young women the pain of having to testify and hoped that the judge would consider that" in issuing the sentence. "Having seen the two girls testify - that was enough. He needed to put an end to this."

Contact staff writer Jacqueline Soteropoulos at 215-854-4497 or jsoteropoulos@phillynews.com.

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