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Dr. Leslie Beitsch, renowned in the field, is also the former deputy secretary of health at the Florida Department of Health, has held various positions at the department and sits on several committees.

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Florida State University’s College of Medicine. (Photo: Hali Tauxe/Democrat)

A Florida State University dean reprimanded a high-ranking chair within the College of Medicine after an investigation into sexual misconduct complaints by the school’s Office of Equal Opportunity and Compliance.

In separate interviews with lead investigator Amber Wagner, an FSU human resources administrator, three women who worked at the college reported what they perceived to be unwelcome sexual advances from Dr. Leslie Beitsch, chair of Behavioral Sciences and Social Medicine at the College of Medicine.

Each woman alleged Beitsch touched their thighs while sitting down at various outings. According to the investigation, there was no “collusion” between the women.

The USA TODAY NETWORK–Florida, which recently learned of the year-old case, requested comment from Beitsch this week multiple times over the course of a week. He has not responded. 

Beitsch, who has a medical degree from Georgetown University School of Medicine and a Harvard Law degree, has been with FSU since 2003. Renowned in the field, Beitsch is also the former deputy secretary of health at the Florida Department of Health, has held various positions at the department and sits on several committees. He is also the former commissioner of health for the State of Oklahoma.

“FSU conducted a full investigation into the allegations and took disciplinary action against the employee as a result,” FSU spokesman Dennis Schnittker wrote in a statement. “The employee was found responsible for a violation of university policy after a thorough and unbiased investigation by the Office of Equal Opportunity and Compliance.”

In an October 2019 written reprimand, College of Medicine Dean John Fogarty wrote the matter “should not be taken lightly,” directed him to a sexual misconduct training session and said a recurrence would result in further disciplinary action.

Schnittker said the investigation was not filed under Title IX, a part of federal law that prohibits sex discrimination and sexual misconduct against students, employees and visitors in educational institutions that receive federal funding, including FSU. The investigation, however, was performed by Wagner, who is also the university’s deputy Title IX coordinator, and the complaints pertain to sexual misconduct and harassment.

Her report, recently provided to the Democrat by a source close to the case, contains a letter of reprimand, transcripts of the interviews with the women, the dean and associate dean, and with Beitsch himself.

Beitsch says he ran his fingers through a woman’s ponytail

In July 2019, a woman who works in a department housed in the same office as Beitsch reported that he asked to meet her for a beer at a local pizzeria one evening after work. She agreed, thinking he was asking to meet to discuss a potential job vacancy or other work-related matter.

In her interview with investigators,