AMERICAN FORK If a woman was worried that her chiropractor was sexually assaulting her, why would she go back 45 times, then refer her husband?
Those are questions the attorney for Grant Hildreth, 44, wants to ask alleged victims during an eight-day jury trial scheduled for March.
Hildreth, formerly a licensed chiropractor, is charged in 4th District Court with eight counts of forcible sex abuse and one count of tampering with a witness or juror, for allegedly touching the breasts and genitals of female clients.
The woman who first reported the alleged abuse said she quit working for Hildreth at his Alpha Life Chiropractic on 8 E. Main in American Fork, because when he would work on her, he would touch her inappropriately, according to an affidavit of probable case filed in 4th District Court.
Hildreth pleaded not guilty to the charges Friday and wants to go forward with a trial, to prove that there are inconsistencies in the women's testimonies.
"Each of the witnesses, we were able to find holes in their story during the preliminary hearing," said defense attorney Carolyn Howard-Morris.
There are also concerns that some of the women alleged abuse, but came back to Hildreth's clinic 45 more times, or came days later, bringing female family members to be treated.
Howard-Morris said she believes some of the women who came forward later did so only because they saw the case publicized on television, which would make them question and possibly over-scrutinize anything Hildreth had done.
"We just want it to be said, (Grant) feels just sick about the allegations," said Howard-Morris. "He had no intent to harm anyone."
Hildreth has voluntarily given up his chiropractor's license and is trying to sell his clinic, he said outside the courtroom.
"I'm selling everything I own," he said. "It's stressful, no doubt about it."
At first, Howard-Morris asked for a 10-day trial, then she and prosecutor Alex Ludlow decided eight days would be sufficient.
Along with the witnesses who will testify against the chiropractor, several women will testify they were always treated respectfully, Howard-Morris said."There are scores of women I've worked on who have called ... who know that I'm not that way," Hildreth said.
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