Crime

'I know we had sex.' Wiretaps played at former Bellefonte dentist's trial

Former Bellefonte dentist Wade Newman is charged with four felony counts of rape, criminal attempt at rape, sexual assault and kidnapping and two misdemeanor charges of indecent assault. He was arraigned by District Judge Kelley Gillette-Walker on Friday, March 31, 2017.
Former Bellefonte dentist Wade Newman is charged with four felony counts of rape, criminal attempt at rape, sexual assault and kidnapping and two misdemeanor charges of indecent assault. He was arraigned by District Judge Kelley Gillette-Walker on Friday, March 31, 2017. Centre Daily Times, file

The trial for the former owner of Bellefonte Family Dentistry and president of the Pennsylvania Dental Association accused of kidnapping and raping a patient of 17 years continued on Tuesday.

Wade Newman, 48, allegedly drove a sedated female patient to a root canal appointment he arranged at State Endodontics in October 2016. Spring Township police said Newman drove the woman back to her residence — although she asked to be driven back to her mother's residence — after the procedure, which is where the rape allegedly occurred.

Newman is charged with four felonies — rape, criminal attempt at rape, sexual assault and kidnapping — and two misdemeanor counts of indecent assault.

Adam Fields, an endodontist at State Endodontics who performed the root canal procedure on the woman, testified about the woman's ability to understand and comply with requests — like opening or closing her mouth, turning her head or responding to her name — during the procedure.

Fields testified she could understand and respond to directions, but required help to maintain her balance after the procedure. Steven Trialonas, one of Newman's two attorneys, questioned Fields' recollection of her post-operation behavior.

In an interview with former state police at Rockview criminal investigator Brian Wakefield in November 2016, Fields told Wakefield, "She seemed normal."

Assistant District Attorney Crystal Hundt responded by asking Fields if the woman followed instructions and did what she was told, which Fields testified she did.

"Nobody asked her to strip down and get naked," Trialonas said. "Nobody knows how she would've responded if she was told to do that, right?"

Wakefield, now employed as Ferguson Township Police Department detective, was called to testify about his role in the investigation aside from interviewing Fields.

He testified he was brought into the investigation because he was certified to conduct a consensual intercept, or wiretap, of a conversation between the woman and Newman. The first wiretap happened the day after the alleged kidnapping and rape and the two can be heard discussing the incident.

"That's an incredible flashback," Newman said after the woman described what she believed happened. "How would you have felt if that happened?"

In his opening statement on Monday, Trialonas said the woman put on lingerie and exposed herself to Newman before the two had sexual intercourse on the steps. The wiretapped conversation played by District Attorney Bernie Cantorna alluded to that statement.

"You showed me some things. That's for sure," Newman said. "I was quite red, that was for sure."

A second wiretap was conducted on Nov. 16, 2016 and the woman told Newman, "I know we had sex. I know it. There is no doubt in my mind."

Cantorna also played video of a one-on-one meeting between Newman and the woman that took place in her kitchen. Wakefield and State College police detective Donald Paul were in the basement for her safety and to listen to the conversation, which was recorded by the woman's cell phone and a device that looked like a key fob.

Newman can be seen and heard entering the residence. He asked the woman for a glass of water and, as she turned her back to him, he turned her cell phone off.

"Let me put your mind at ease. We did not have sex," Newman said.

He then told her he was attempting to leave her residence, but stopped on the stairs because she exited her bedroom wearing "sexy, red, unbelievable, just incredibly sexy lingerie."

Newman told her she exposed herself to him and that he wanted to have a relationship with her for "a very long time," but never pursued a relationship because she was married.

He continued to describe the sexual encounter to her, but denied ever having intercourse with her.

"You've got a rocking body," Newman said. "I would like to kiss you now."

The woman denied Newman's request and told him about the affect the incident had on her.

"I wish I would've died. I'm a survivor. I don't live; I just survive," the woman said.

The woman's mother was the next to testify.

She testified her daughter called her sounding "different" and said Newman raped on her the steps.

She also testified about picking up and delivering medicine to her daughter that she got from Newman. Cantorna asked the woman what it was like to pick up medicine from a dentist who allegedly raped her daughter.

"I could've smashed his face in," the woman testified. "I could've killed him."

Her daughter was the next to testify and Cantorna asked her about her interactions with Newman as he drove her to her appointment.

"He wasn't just nice. He was distant. He was driving fast. He turned left on a red light," the woman testified.

She also sent her husband a text message that described Newman as "creepy."

"I didn't necessarily mean that in a bad way," the woman testified. "He was just different from how he was in the office."

She also testified she told Newman to drop her off at her mother's residence after the procedure because she believed she would be sick, not because she was afraid of Newman.

Cantorna then asked her what she remembered about the incident and she testified Newman was wearing blue scrubs while having intercourse with her.

When questioned by Stephanie Cooper, Newman's second attorney, the woman denied wearing lingerie and exposing herself to Newman.

"That's not me anyway. I would not flash anyone," the woman testified. "I had no interest in sex whatsoever."

Cooper also questioned the woman about a voicemail that she left for Fields' office that said, "You're all going down."

When asked what that meant, the woman testified, "It meant that I was going to report them all."

The trial is scheduled to resume Wednesday and conclude Thursday.

Centre County District Attorney Stacy Parks Miller speaks about the charges brought against Bellefonte dentist Wade Newman.



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