(WJBK) - Dr. Steven Cogswell was supposed to be treating inmates in jail, now he could end up locked behind bars, as well.
Prosecuting attorney Eric Smith is charging Cogswell with six counts of second-degree criminal sexual conduct for allegedly having sex with female inmates at the county jail. Sources tell FOX 2 an inmate told sheriff deputies about what was happening there.
Cogswell could spend more than a decade behind bars for a jailhouse sex scandal that a Macomb County's prosecuting attorney calls an "outrageous abuse of power." Police and prosecutors say the doctor engaged in a number of sexual encounters inside the jail's medical center between August and September.
An inmate tipped off the sheriff's department, which launched an investigation. Smith says deputies found sexually explicit pictures and videos on Cogwell's phone.
FOX 2 stopped by the doctor's home but no one came to the door or returned our calls.
Neighbors were stunned after hearing the allegations.
"It's surprising," said Walt Schell.
Cogswell worked for Correct Care Solutions, the medical group contracted by the county to provide medical care for inmates.
The company would not comment on the allegations but did confirm that Cogswell has been fired.
"This is another doctor who is taking advantage of a vulnerable person," said Smith. "Not just a patient who needed his help but a woman who was in jail, in prison, in trouble and needed desperately to be understood and helped."
FOX 2 asked Dr. Gerald Sheiner, a licensed psychiatrist, to weigh in on the jail house sex scandal.
"Jails are the largest psychiatric facilities in the state of Michigan," he said. "The Wayne County jail has135 psychiatric beds, Oakland and Macomb are a close second. and there are tremendous problems in jail lockups finding doctors willing to work in that setting. We hear about these things: doctors ignoring their patients and now exploiting them."
This is the most recent scandal at the jail. Three inmates have died here in the past five years. one woman was forced to give birth on the floor of her jail cell.
As for Cogswell, he is expected to turn himself in Friday morning.