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Naples doctor accused of drugging, sexually abusing patients

Victims aged 51, 72, according to police report
Posted at 10:10 AM, Nov 22, 2022
and last updated 2022-11-23 05:20:48-05

NAPLES, Fla. — A Southwest Florida doctor is accused of performing sexual acts with victims under medical anesthesia.

Records from the Collier County Sheriff's Office show Dr. Eric Salata was arrested Monday and charged with two counts of sexual battery upon a "physically helpless" person.

Naples police records show two separate incidents allegedly taking place at the Pura Vida Medical Spa on 5th Avenue South. A website for the establishment says it is co-owned by Eric and Jill Salata.

The police report says the victims, ages 51 and 72, came in for cosmetic procedures between October and November of this year.

"This is one of those instances that represents [a] worst case scenario," said Naples Police Lt. Bryan McGinn.

The 51-year-old victim came forward on October 24, claiming she was given alprazolam (Xanax) and laughing gas prior to the procedure. She alleges that Dr. Salata grabbed her genitals and "[shook] her with force," and later offered her tequila "to help with the pain."

Salata then poured her a clear liquid which she says in the report she believed to be tequila and, while still under the effects of medication and anesthesia, drank it. She then tells police she "blacked out," and when she came back into consciousness, the doctor was performing a sex act on her.

In the police report, the 72-year-old victim says Salata offered her laughing gas to deal with the pain related to her procedure.

"A second victim came forward with a similar — relaying a similar set of circumstances," McGinn said.

She claims the doctor began "massaging" her roughly, and when she complained, dosed her with more gas and then proceeded to rape her.

The second victim saved DNA evidence and gave it to police. McGinn calls it extremely helpful.

"It's extremely insightful for the victim to do such a thing," McGinn said. "It takes a lot of courage."

The second victim's report led to Salata's arrest that same day. We asked police why it took a month to arrest Salata when they had a previous complaint.

"Things that have to go to the labs and things of that nature that we would normally wait to receive those results back until formally arresting an individual such like this," McGinn explained. "But then when the second case came through yesterday that changed things obviously."

Detectives collected physical evidence from both victims, which they say was sent to an FDLE lab for comparison. A search warrant was also executed at the Pura Vida clinic.

McGinn says they do not believe there are more victims.

Salata made his first appearance before a judge Tuesday before posting $200,000 bond. Salata has no criminal history, according to his defense attorney or a records search by Fox 4.

According to Florida Department of Health records, there have been no complaints or disciplinary action taken against Salata prior to his arrest.

Another court appearance for Salata is scheduled for December 19.

Police ask anyone with additional information about these investigations to call 239-213-3000.