The Texas Medical Board has suspended the license of the chief child psychiatrist of a state-run treatment center for the mentally ill after the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services accused him of sexually assaulting teen boys in his care over the last 20 years.
According to the board's order, the DFPS fired Charles Fischer of Austin State Hospital after "confirmation...that [Fischer] was involved in at least two separate instances of sexual abuse of a child." The 59-year-old Fischer was fired November 14.
Fischer allegedly abused eight boys, who ranged in age from 13 to 17, during individual "counseling" sessions in his office, by forcing them to perform oral sex; performing oral sex on them; masturbating in front of them; and rubbing their groins and legs. According to the order, Fischer acknowledged that "there was another allegation involving a ninth patient." The alleged incidents occurred between 1992 and 2006.
In an earlier statement, a DFPS spokesman explained that "each case was investigated thoroughly, but none were confirmed until October, when two separate allegations of sexual abuse against Dr. Fischer were confirmed" and DFPS was notified.
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One of the boys was allegedly abused at Waco Center for Youth, where Fischer had also worked; the ninth allegation came from a boy he saw while he worked at the Southwest Neuropsychiatric Institute in San Antonio. (Fischer also worked at Lutheran Social Services Residential Treatment Center and Central Counties Mental Health and Mental Retardation, according to the Board.)
Fischer served on a committee that developed state guidelines for prescribing psychotropic medication to foster children. He was licensed in 1984.
The board's disciplinary panel suspended Fischer's license without notice of hearing. We left Fischer a voice mail, but we're not holding our breath.