Strangle: To kill by squeezing the throat so as to choke or suffocate; throttle. (But that certainly is not the only problem here.)Shands doctor faces criminal charges
A Shands physician is facing several criminal charges stemming from an incident in which police said he strangled a former girlfriend and threw her into a pool, and a temporary injunction has been filed against him by the ex-girlfriend, according to records.
Bruce Goldfeder, 48, who is a clinical assistant professor at the University of Florida and serves as the medical director of the NASA medical support team from UF, was initially arrested Nov. 11 for an incident involving his former girlfriend, Juanita May, 49.
A neighbor helped May call police in the early morning hours of Nov. 11, and May told police that Goldfeder, who did not have a key to her residence at 3903 SW 89th Drive, was in her home when she arrived that evening, according to the arrest report.
During a struggle with Goldfeder, May told police that she was forced into the bathroom and that Goldfeder ripped her clothes off. When May screamed for help, she told police, Goldfeder stuffed a toilet paper roll and a hand towel into her mouth, the report states.
After a couple of hours in the bathroom, May said she was dragged outside by the legs and then thrown into the pool. The report states that once outside, May realized that thousands of dollars worth of her belongings had also been thrown into the water.
Deputies with the Alachua County Sheriff's Office located Goldfeder around 8 a.m. that morning, and he told them there were drugs in a bag he was carrying, deputies reported. Upon inspection, the deputies found cocaine and drug paraphernalia in the bag, according to an arrest report.
Goldfeder was arrested, but was then released on Nov. 13 on his own recognizance by a judge, according to jail records. Jail records indicate that he was released under supervision of the court services office, including being under GPS monitoring.
Rod Smith, the attorney representing Goldfeder, said Goldfeder's version of the story differs considerably from May's version.
"There are two sides to this story and we're anxious to have our side heard," Smith said. "There's much more to this story than the allegations, and ultimately all of that will come forward."
Kyle Cavanaugh, senior vice president for administration at UF, said Goldfeder is still employed at the university, but that he is no longer seeing patients.
"We're well aware of the external allegations and immediately when that was brought to our attention, the university did go ahead and modify his job duties," Cavanaugh said. "His clinical responsibilities were eliminated. He is still employed and we don't expect a change in that at this point in time."
Goldfeder is as a faculty member in the department of emergency medicine at UF, and is the associate medical director of the ShandsCair Flight Team, according to UF's Web site. He also leads a team of UF physicians, Shands medical staff physicians and Shands nurses to space shuttle launches to act as support for the NASA emergency medical services team at Kennedy Space Center.
Also pending against Goldfeder is a injunction for protection against dating violence that May filed in court Dec. 10. A judge has ordered a temporary injunction against Goldfeder and a hearing on the possibility of a permanent injunction is scheduled for February.
Smith said he and his client have not objected to the injunction because Goldfeder has no desire to have contact with May.
Court records show that no hearings have been set pertaining to the criminal charges against Goldfeder, which include possession of cocaine, domestic battery by strangulation, false imprisonment and burglary.
Copyright © The Gainesville Sun (12/21/07)