The co-executive producer of popular US comedy series Scrubs has been charged with 18 counts of sexual assault.
Eric Weinberg, 62, is said to have “relied on his Hollywood credentials” to lure young women to photo shoots where he allegedly assaulted them, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney.
The charges stem from alleged incidents involving five women at different times between 2014 and 2019.
Weinberg was charged with six counts of sexual penetration by use of force, four counts of oral copulation, three counts of forcible rape, and two counts of sexual battery by restraint.
He also faces one count each of assault by means of force likely to cause great bodily injury, attempted sexual penetration by use of force and false imprisonment by violence.
He has since been released from police custody, following his arrest in July, after posting a 5 million dollar (£4.4 million) bond.
He is expected to be arraigned on October 25 at the Foltz Criminal Justice Centre in downtown Los Angeles.
According to the DA’s office, on two separate occasions in 2014, Weinberg approached two women at public locations and told them he was a photographer.
In each instance, he was in communication with the victims who eventually went to his home where he is accused of sexually assaulting them.
In 2017, the defendant allegedly used the same ruse to bring a young woman back to his house where he sexually assaulted her.
Weinberg also is accused of sexually assaulting two women in separate incidents in 2018 and 2019, the DA’s office said.
LA County District Attorney George Gascon said: “The defendant relied on his Hollywood credentials to lure young women for photo shoots where he allegedly sexually assaulted them.
“Power and influence can corrupt some to hurt others that often leads to a lifetime of trauma for those who are victimised.
“My office’s Bureau of Victim Services is here to help in the healing process to ensure all victims have the guidance and support they need on the road to recovery.”
The case is still under investigation by the Los Angeles Police Department and further victims or anyone with information have been urged to contact detectives.
Scrubs is an American sitcom from by Ted Lasso co-creator Bill Lawrence, that aired from October 2001 to March 2010.
The series follows the lives of employees at the fictional Sacred Heart Hospital, which is a teaching facility, and starred Zach Braff, Donald Faison, Sarah Chalke and Judy Reyes.