Robison rejects plea offer for alleged sex crimes

A Bowling Green man accused of sexual misconduct and practicing medicine without a license has refused a plea offer and the case is going to trial.

William Van Robison, 69, appeared Friday in the courtroom of Wood County Common Pleas Judge Joel Kuhlman.

Special Prosecutor Drew Wood said that if Robison pleaded guilty to one gross sexual imposition charge for each of two victims, the state would dismiss the remaining charges.

Both charges are fourth-degree felonies.

Robison rejected that offer.

He was indicted in October 2021 for practicing medicine without a license, a fifth-degree felony; two counts sexual battery, both third-degree felonies; gross sexual imposition, a fourth-degree felony; and sexual imposition, a third-degree misdemeanor.

From June 1, 2015, to Dec. 31, 2017, Robison allegedly practiced medicine and surgery, or any of its branches, without the appropriate license or certificate from the state medical board; opened an office for such practice; or practiced medicine or surgery after his license had been revoked or suspended.

Robison has operated Myo-Fit Pain Management on North Main Street for a number of years. He reportedly advertised that he is a licensed massage therapist and certified manual trigger point therapist.

During that same time, Robison is accused of engaging in sexual conduct twice with a person he knew whose ability to appraise the nature of or control her conduct was substantially impaired; causing another to have sexual contact with him by purposely compelling that person to submit by force or threat of force; and having sexual contact with another knowing that contact was offensive or reckless.

Robison was indicted again in February for two counts sexual battery, both third-degree felonies.

The new charges state that on Jan. 1, 2008, and again from Jan. 8, 2008, to Dec. 31, 2010, he allegedly engaged in sexual conduct while knowing the victim’s ability to know what was going on was substantially impaired.

In May, Robison had rejected the state’s offer for a guilty plea to a sex offense.

Wood, who is an associate assistant to Ohio’s attorney general, requested the two cases be joined for purpose of trial.

“Essentially, the two cases have the same act,” Wood said. “He was disguising sexual assault as massage therapy.”

The two cases, each with its own alleged victim, will be the same, with jurors being asked to determine legitimate medical therapy versus sexual assault, Wood said.

Defense attorney Sara Roller did not object to the motion.

“He wants to get this done,” she said about her client.

Roller replaced Scott Coon, who in August had asked to be removed as Robison’s attorney.

Kuhlman granted the motion to combine the cases.

A jury trial has been scheduled for Feb. 6-10.