Georgia doctor faces murder charges after 2 die in surgery; license revoked
02/23/2016 4:00 pm PST
Dr. Nedra Dodds, a model-turned-plastic-surgeon, had her medical license stripped after two of her patients died during cosmetic surgery in 2013. It now appears that her license isn't the only thing this doctor could lose.
Nedra Dodds, a plastic surgeon, was called a "threat to public safety." Two women died when she performed surgery on them. Their parents blame Dodds.
A Cobb County, Georgia grand jury indicted her on felony murder charges.
"Felony murder carries a mandatory life sentence," said Cobb County District Attorney Vic Reynolds.
The grand jury also indicted Dodds's former medical partner, Dr. Kevin McCowan.
In addition to felony murder, the two doctors face charges of aggravated battery and theft by deception.
Both Dodds and McCowan got out jail after posting bond.
It all started when the two young women walked into Dodds's Opulence Aesthetic Medicine, a plastic surgery med spa in Kennesaw, Georgia outside Atlanta in 2013. Both left the facility in ambulances and ended up dead at a local hospital.
"We came to the conclusion that we believe in fact criminal acts had occurred," said Reynolds.
All 37-year-old April Jenkins wanted was liposuction and fat injections in her butt. But what she got, according to the coroner's report, was a damaged liver, punctured diaphragm and a rag stuffed in her mouth.
Four months after Jenkins died, 28-year-old Erica Beaubrun, went in to have her silicone butt implants removed. The police report says Beaubrun was in "cardiac arrest" and "lying in a pool of blood" when paramedics arrived.
The report goes on to say Dodds, who was board-certified in emergency medicine, waited "22 minutes before fire personnel was called."
Dierdre Mowry feels blessed to be alive after she says Dodds botched her liposuction procedure. So does Melisha Quarles.
"They crucified me: one to my left, one to my right and then they was down there holding my feet down so I wouldn't move, because I'm wiggling, and it was like 'Be still,'" said Quarles.
Quarles says she's lucky to be alive after lipo and a tummy tuck. Instead of flat abs, she got a tummy without a belly button. She says Dodds completely removed her navel, and she got a horrible infection.
"I look and blood was all on my hands, and that's when I really went in a panic, like 'Oh my God, y'all let me go, I'll go to the emergency room, y'all just stop right now, please just let me go, please, I'm begging,'" said Quarles. "I felt for my life."
Quarles claims she was restrained against her will and wasn't given enough anesthesia. In her "twilight" state, she says she could feel the intense pain of the scalpel piercing her abdomen.
"I said 'Oh my God,' I said 'Please stop, I feel it, you just cut me,' I said 'Please let me go,'" said Quarles.
So what happened?
One former employee who doesn't want to be identified told Crime Watch Daily Atlanta affiliate WGCL that Dodds's troubles began when she had marital problems.
"She used to pay attention to what she was doing, she used to be very thorough, and we could see over the course of six months where she started to kind of spin out of control her," said the former employee. "Her work started to get sloppier. She wasn't taking the time to take that she needed to take as a surgeon."
Dodds was ordered to appear before a meeting of the entire Georgia State Medical Board.
In a seven-page decision they suspended her license, saying her "continued practice of medicine poses a threat to the public health, safety, and welfare."
But it wasn't over yet. Dodds then appeared before an administrative law judge.
"I am not the first physician to lose a patient," said Dodds.
The judge didn't buy her argument, and revoked her license to practice.
Now Dodds is in her toughest legal battle ever as she faces two potential life sentences.
And Melisha Quarles former patient is showing no mercy.
"I don't think that she should ever be able to practice even here in the United States, or any planet, or Jupiter," said Quarles.