Dakota County Attorney James Backstrom announced that Gavin Patrick Meany, age 38 of Apple Valley, was charged* late Friday, September 13, 2019, with two counts of Criminal Sexual Conduct in the Third Degree in connection with having sexual relations with a patient. At the time of these alleged acts, Meany was treating the victim as a patient in his role as a psychiatrist.
A summary of the allegations contained in the criminal complaint is set forth below:
On August 27, 2019, the Burnsville Police Department received a report from a woman (hereafter referred to as the “victim") who disclosed that she had been abused over the last five years by Meany while she had been receiving therapy and psychiatric services from him. The victim met with law enforcement and provided a detailed statement as well as physical evidence and documents pertaining to the sexual assaults.
The victim described multiple acts of sexual touching and penetration that occurred in the professional offices of Meany, first in the City of St. Louis Park (these allegations are currently under investigation in Hennepin County) and later in Meany's professional office in the City of Burnsville between May of 2018 and August of 2019. The victim also described one act of sexual intercourse that occurred between her and Meany at his home in Apple Valley in May of 2018.
When questioned by an investigator, Meany acknowledged he “crossed boundaries" with the victim and admitted to the sexual activity described by the victim.
Additional facts pertaining to this case can be found in the criminal complaint which may be obtained from the Dakota County Court Administrator's Office (by contacting 651-438-8100). The names of victims of criminal sexual conduct are not public under Minnesota law, and while the complaint does describe the reasons the victim sought medical services from Meany, we would request that this information not be included in any news story pertaining to this case as it is not relevant to the basis for these criminal charges.
Backstrom commented: “It is a felony under Minnesota law for a psychotherapist providing professional services to engage in sexual penetration or contact with a patient during a psychotherapy session or outside a psychotherapy session, if the professional relationship still exists. Consent by the patient is not a defense. Criminal activity of this nature is a significant breach of trust by the psychotherapist as to any patient. I wish to commend the victim for the courage to come forward and report these allegations to law enforcement."
Backstrom thanked the Burnsville Police Department for their thorough investigation of this case. Meany made his first appearance in court last week and bail in the amount of $100,000 without conditions ($15,000 with conditions) was set by Dakota County District Court Judge Karen Asphaug. His next court appearance is set for October 10, 2019 at 1:30 p.m. in Hastings. If you have questions, contact James Backstrom at 651-438-4438.
*Criminal charges are not evidence of guilt. A defendant/suspect is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
 Psychotherapists include any physician, psychologist, nurse, chemical dependency counselor, social worker, marriage and family therapist, licensed professional counselor, or other mental health service provider, or any other person who performs psychotherapy.
 Psychotherapy services include professional treatment, assessment or counseling of a mental or emotional illness, symptom or condition.