A San Diego dental assistant accused of sexually assaulting women while they were sedated in the dental chair has pleaded guilty to 13 criminal charges.
Luis Ramos, 36, will be sentenced Aug. 26 and faces a maximum punishment of 15 years.
Ramos entered his guilty plea on Wednesday morning during his preliminary hearing.
In total, Ramos sexually assaulted 13 women, prosecutors said. He admitted to inappropriately touching nine women, sexually penetrating one women, trying to penetrate another woman and admitted to misdemeanor charges related to inappropriately touching of two additional women.
All the crimes took place while the women were under anesthesia and Ramos was tasked with cleaning up the area after a dental procedure.
Ramos was initially arrested on Feb. 4 on suspicion of inappropriately touching a 17-year-old girl while she was undergoing a procedure at the Park Boulevard Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery Office in University Heights, where he worked.
Prosecutors later said they had identified another 12 victims. Ramos is accused of touching their breasts, buttocks and groin between January 2015 and January 2016. One of the victims was in a wheelchair, the DA’s office said.
Most of the sex acts were captured on security cameras. The surgeon said he had the cameras installed in 2009 to provide an “extra layer of protection” for patients and as “an effort at transparency.”
Since Ramos’ arrest, San Diego police combed through more than 500 hours of surveillance video from the office’s recovery room where the assaults took place.
The woman assaulted ranged in age from 17 to 63, with most being younger patients getting wisdom teeth extractions, prosecutors said.