CASPER, Wyo. — Prosecutors say a former Wyoming doctor used his medical practice to prey upon six women.

The first day of trial began Monday for former Casper OB-GYN Paul Harnetty, who is charged with eight counts of second-degree sexual assault and two counts of third-degree sexual assault.

Prosecutor Mike Schafer told the Casper court that Harnetty sexually exploited his patients, most of whom had no other options for medical treatment because of their insurance providers.

Harnetty’s attorney Don Fuller told the court that an OB-GYN has to touch genitals as part of an exam, and sometimes that touching can be uncomfortable but necessary.

Harnetty voluntarily relinquished his license to practice medicine in Wyoming in October 2016 after the state medical board began an investigation against him.

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