A former Billings Clinic nurse pleaded guilty Monday to sexually assaulting an underage girl.
Todd Edward Kinzel, 46, was charged after an investigation into reports by two girls that Kinzel had touched them in an inappropriate way during what he told them was a “comprehensive exam.”
Kinzel pleaded guilty before Yellowstone County District Judge Russell Fagg.
Kinzel's plea agreement amended his charges to sexual assault against just one of the victims. The agreement calls for a 20-year sentence to the Montana Department of Corrections with 15 years suspended.
Kinzel was employed at the time with Billings Clinic. His nursing license in Montana will not expire until 2016. Julie Burton, communications director at Billings Clinic, said the clinic was notified by law enforcement in April 2015 that Kinzel was under investigation.
“We suspended him immediately, and he is no longer an employee," Burton said. "We cooperated fully with law enforcement, including providing access to personal files on his work computer. The authorities assured us that the criminal charges were not work related.”
Burton said Kinzel was never involved in direct patient care.
Officers arrested Kinzel in 2015 when the girl reported to someone at her high school that he'd abused her in 2009.
The girl told officers that when she was 13 years old, Kinzel had touched her after asking her to remove her pants and underwear. Kinzel wrote an apology letter, which officers found on his work computer, that admitted Kinzel had performed the “breast exam” and had asked the girl to remove her pants, according to court documents.
"(The exam) was simply an excuse to have you take off your bra and pull down your pants," Kinzel wrote to the girl. "Stethoscopes do work on top of shirts too, not just under them."
Kinzel posted a $50,000 bond and is not in custody or on monitoring at this time.