dr aaron wohl arrested – A Prominent Psychiatrist Gets Arrested


Dr. Aaron Wohl was a prominent and well-respected Newport Beach, California psychiatrist. He had been practicing psychiatry for over 20 years and had helped thousands of patients with various mental health issues. However, his career ended unexpectedly when he got arrested in January 2019. Let’s dive deeper into who Dr. Aaron Wohl was and what led to his arrest.

Who was Dr. Aaron Wohl?

  • Dr. Aaron Wohl received his medical degree from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center.
  • He had spent over two decades working as a psychiatrist in Newport Beach, California. During this time, he developed a reputation for being a compassionate and skilled doctor.
  • His areas of specialization included treating conditions like depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, and more through therapies like medication management and talk therapy.
  • At his arrest, Dr. Wohl owned and operated his private practice called Coastal Psychiatry Medical Group in Newport Beach.
  • He was hugely popular in the region and had treated thousands of patients from all walks of life, including many CEOs, celebrities, and athletes.
  • Dr. Wohl was also active in the medical community. He had lectured at various institutions and authored peer-reviewed medical journal publications.
  • Overall, he came across as a prominent and respected figure in psychiatry with a successful career spanning over two decades.

The Events Leading Up To His Arrest

Some key events that eventually led to Dr. Wohl’s downfall and arrest are:

  • In late 2018, several of Dr. Wohl’s former patients had lodged complaints against him with the Medical Board of California.
  • The complaints accused him of inappropriate behavior, like engaging in romantic relationships with multiple patients and endangering their welfare.
  • Following these complaints, the Medical Board thoroughly investigated Dr. Wohl and his practice. They reviewed patient records and text messages and interviewed people.
  • The investigation found substance to the accusations. It was revealed that Dr. Wohl had inappropriate contact, both online and physically, with multiple patients over the years.
  • There was evidence that, in some cases, he had over-prescribed addictive medications to manipulate and take advantage of vulnerable patients.
  • Based on the evidence collected during the months-long investigation, the Orange County District Attorney’s Office filed five felony charges against Dr. Wohl in January 2019.
  • It included three counts of sexual exploitation by a physician and two counts of assault with intent to commit a felony. He surrendered himself to the authorities and was arrested.

The Criminal Charges And Trial

Following are some critical details about the criminal charges and subsequent trial:

  • The earliest charges dated back to crimes allegedly committed between 2010 and 2014 involving inappropriate contact with three different female patients.
  • Prosecutors accused Dr. Wohl of befriending the women when they were his psychiatric patients and were in a vulnerable state. He had allegedly taken advantage of the doctor-patient relationship.
  • The women claimed that the psychiatrist later initiated romantic relationships and physical contact with them, which is a major ethical violation.
  • Authorities also alleged that in some cases, Dr. Wohl had continued the inappropriate behavior even after the women had stopped being his patients, showing predatory behavior.
  • His trial started in September 2020 in Orange County Superior Court amidst huge media attention, given his prominent standing in the medical community.
  • Throughout a month-long trial, prosecutors presented evidence like medical records, text messages, photographs, and witness testimony against Dr. Wohl.
  • His legal defense team countered the accusations and tried painting the complaints as false and driven by resentment against a successful professional.
  • However, in the end, the jury found the evidence against Dr. Wohl compelling and convicted him of all five felony charges in October 2020.

The Aftermath And Sentencing

Some key points about what happened after Dr. Wohl’s conviction:

  • In December 2020, the court sentenced him to 6 years in state prison for his crimes.
  • It effectively ended his decades-long career as a psychiatrist and revoked his medical license permanently.
  • His conviction made the news nationwide and was seen as a reminder that even prominent figures are not above the law.
  • It highlighted the importance of strict ethics and boundaries that doctors, especially psychiatrists, must follow in their professional practice.
  • The victims in the case felt a sense of relief and closure that the legal system had held Dr. Wohl accountable for his wrongdoings.
  • For Dr. Wohl, it marked a steep fall from grace and represented the tragic end of a career built over many years that was destroyed by his severe ethical lapses and criminal behavior.
  • He continues to serve his prison sentence while maintaining his innocence and appealing his conviction. But it remains uncertain if he can ever practice medicine again.

How Did This Affect The Medical Community?

Dr. Wohl’s spectacular downfall had some critical impacts on the medical system:

  • It served as an important reminder for doctors about the significance of maintaining proper boundaries with patients, especially those dealing with mental health issues.
  • Medical boards and ethics committees emphasized the need to prevent such cases by closely scrutinizing complaints and keeping strict policies regarding relationships.
  • Hospitals and private practices were encouraged to implement more robust practices like evaluating a doctor’s contact with current and former patients through phone/text records.
  • Psychiatrists significantly recognize that they should avoid any behavior or comments that could undermine patient trust or take advantage due to the sensitive mental state of these individuals.
  • Victims advocacy groups felt it set a precedence and motivated more people to come forward with complaints against abusive doctors to curb misconduct.
  • At the same time, some felt genuine patients may hesitate to seek help due to fears of improper behavior, so compassion must be shown to rebuild trust.
  • Overall, it served as a wake-up call that even the most successful doctors can lose everything if they violate the basic ethics of the profession. Strict rules are required to protect patients.


The spectacular fall of dr aaron wohl arrested proved how a long and distinguished medical career can face a swift downfall due to unethical conduct that breaks the trust between doctors and patients. While he maintains his innocence, the court found evidence of wrongdoing. His victims felt vindicated, and it emphasized the need for stringent policies to prevent such abuse of power. The medical fraternity also recognized lapses that enabled this and has since aimed to learn from this case. It highlighted that emotions or success cannot justify violating essential duties toward providing a safe environment for treatment.

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