News


Chiropractor gives up license in deal

SATURDAY, JUNE 13, 2009

State probe alleged series of improprieties

A Spokane Valley chiropractor has agreed to a 10-year license suspension to settle allegations of double-billing, having sex with a patient and smoking marijuana.

Travis Broughton denied the allegations made by a woman he referred to as his “crazy ex-girlfriend.”

“You date the wrong woman, and this is what can happen,” he said in an interview.

He said he has sold his Spokane Valley chiropractic clinic.

Broughton can apply to have his credentials restored by the Washington state Department of Health’s Chiropractic Quality Assurance Commission in seven years.

But according to an agreement between the state and the chiropractor, Broughton would have to undergo a sex-offender treatment evaluation, pay a $10,000 fine, pass two years of random drug and alcohol tests, and attend support-group meetings before he could attempt to have his credentials reinstated.

State investigators accused Broughton of charging two patients $136 an hour for massage therapy instead of his normal $60 rate.

Investigators also accuse Broughton of pursuing a romantic relationship with a patient he met in 2006.

During their relationship, which began in January 2007, Broughton did not bill the patient for chiropractic services. When the patient ended the relationship after five or six months, Broughton sent her a bill for services provided during the relationship, according to state investigators.

The woman then told investigators about the relationship and said she observed Broughton regularly smoking marijuana, sometimes during his lunch hour before resuming work.

Broughton’s attorney, Aaron Lowe, called the allegations false. “The evidence just wasn’t there, and the state knew it,” he said.

Lowe claimed depositions he took of witnesses would have proved that Broughton didn’t bill his ex-girlfriend for services after their relationship ended, and that the accusations of marijuana use were false.

Instead, Lowe said, Broughton chose to settle the state’s charges – which included unprofessional conduct, excessive professional charges, improper billing and sexual misconduct – in hopes of avoiding publicity.

Michael Brown, staff attorney with the Department of Health, dismissed Broughton’s assertion that there was no evidence against him.

“Let’s just say this: If he felt the case wasn’t provable, he should have presented his case at a hearing,” he said. “We believe the evidence was there and we pursued the charges.”



Click here to comment on this story »