Thomas Floyd, a West Palm Beach, Florida dentist, has been convicted of child neglect for allegedly physically and verbally abusing a 7-year-old patient, news sources report. Floyd, 60, has agreed never to practice dentistry again and to serve five years of probation as part of a plea deal. Prosecutors apparently agreed not to seek sentences for Floyd regarding “known” victims as part of the deal, sources say. However, numerous victims are still out there, sources indicate, some of whom may have incurred injuries. It remains to be seen whether any of those victims will file suits for the alleged abuse.
According to reports, Floyd has been practicing as a dentist in West Palm Beach for over a decade. During that time, he had built up an impeccable reputation with many patients. Floyd acted as president for the Florida Dental Association from 1997 to 1998, sources say. “I know him to be a fine and honorable man,” John Jordan, a longtime friend of Floyd, reportedly said.
Floyd was one of the few dentists in West Palm Beach who accepted Medicaid patients, according to the press. “I don’t know of anyone else in the area who treated Medicaid. I think he did the citizens of Palm Beach County a great service by being willing to treat Medicaid [patients],” Jordan apparently told the press. Floyd acted as a chairman for a number of committees that highlighted issues such as poor dental care for Medicaid patients. Based on reports, Floyd even travelled the United States giving lectures on the importance of helping Medicaid patients. One of Floyd’s lectures was reportedly titled, “How to treat kids no one wants to treat, get paid one quarter of your usual fee, and have fun doing it.”
While many of Floyd’s patients and their parents praised his work, others were not so satisfied. Allegations of malpractice emerged in 2001, sources say. A young girl accused Floyd of smacking her in the face during a visit to his clinic then, but the allegation apparently did not result in charges.
Then, in 2004, four-year-old Adam Delgado visited Floyd’s clinic for fillings, reports say. Delgado apparently sustained bruising on his cheek and collarbone, as well as scratches on his arms, during the procedure. Floyd also allegedly put a crown on one of Delgado’s teeth, despite not having discussed doing so with the child’s parents. Jennie Rivera, Delgado’s mother, reportedly said that after the procedure, “… I had never seen a kid’s face look like that. His eyes looked like he had just seen the worst thing in the world.”
Samantha Eleazer, who worked at the clinic as Floyd’s dental assistant at the time, reportedly said Floyd struck Delgado on the arm thrice with a dental tool and pinched him. “No one’s believing these children,” Eleazer supposedly said in a police report. “And it’s sad that nobody’s believing what’s going on.”
Since then, numerous reports of abuse at Floyd’s clinic have been uncovered, reports say. In 2010, Floyd allegedly put a mouth prop in a four-year-old boy’s mouth, causing a bleeding wound. Floyd also allegedly hit the child three times. Floyd’s arrest was in regards to this incident.
Source: 9.21.13 Floyd Malpractice.pdf