GRAND JUNCTION, CO (CNN/RNN) - A doctor, formerly of Colorado, pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor count of harassment and received a sentence of community service for dying his patient’s genitals purple.
An online petition with Care2 is calling for Dr. Barry King’s medical license to be revoked in response to his October sentencing for the January 2017 incident. The petition has nearly reached its goal of 50,000 signatures.
After a female patient accused King of dying her genitals purple as a “joke” for her husband, the doctor was immediately suspended without pay from his job at Colorado West Woman Care in Grand Junction.
In court this year, the victim, a breast cancer survivor, told the judge that she went to the gynecologist because she was worried the cancer may have returned, this time to her genital area, The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel reports.
She said, after her exam, King said her husband, whom the doctor didn’t know well, should take a look at the area. That night, she noticed a purple color on her toilet paper, which she recognized as gentian violet, a medication used to treat some types of fungal infections.
The woman worked in an administrative side of King’s practice but said she hadn’t heard of that particular dye have been used for years, according to the Daily Sentinel.
The next day, when she asked the doctor about the dye, she said he told her it was “a joke” for her husband.
King was ultimately charged with a misdemeanor count of harassment, to which he pleaded guilty Oct. 26. He was ordered to complete community service and kept his medical license.
Those signing the Care2 petition are asking the Colorado Medical Board to look more closely at the incident and not allow King to practice medicine.
"In my mind, doing that to somebody’s personal parts is no different... than molesting them,” said Grand Junction resident Buffy Lake. “I’m very shocked he has his medical license. That’s a person that you’re supposed to trust, and that’s just way over the line.”
Court records show King last worked in Louisiana at a military hospital. The hospital says he doesn’t work there anymore as of Oct. 31 but did not say why.