Union County acupuncturist convicted of sexually assaulting patient loses appeal

A state appellate court upheld a Union County acupuncturist's conviction of sexually assaulting a patient at his Springfield office and ruled that his five-year sentence in state prison was neither "excessive nor unduly punitive."

Edward Raskin, 69, of Chatham, unsuccessfully argued the guilty verdict was based on findings not supported by fact, the court should not have allowed the victim's mother to testify, and he was denied a fair trial by errors.

Raskin did successfully appeal a minor legal point on the merger of a criminal sexual contact charge into a sexual assault charge.

The state Department of Corrections website lists May 19, 2025 as Raskin's parole eligibility date. He is an inmate at South Woods State Prison in Cumberland County.

During a two-week bench trial in 2020, the victim testified that she had sought treatment for pain in her right shoulder through acupuncture at Raskin's Springfield office from Oct. 15, 2017 to Dec. 30, 2017, according to court papers.

During her third appointment, massage was added to her treatment program and during her fourth and fifth visits with Raskin, he said her bra strap was interfering with her massage and he asked to unhook it, court papers say. In later appointments Raskin said a key acupuncture point ran from her breast to her back, and she allowed him to pull her right shoulder up off the table and run his hand from her breast to her back, court papers say. Later at home she researched whether that was a legitimate treatment and found it was an acceptable practice, court papers say.

Her last appointment was Dec. 30, 2017 during which Raskin began to massage her shoulder before sliding his arms under his breasts and squeezing them several times, according to court papers. She pulled her arms and elbows to her side before Raskin slipped his hands under her pants, court papers say. She responded, "whoa," and he apologized and removed his hand, according to court papers.

But Raskin continued to massage her back and pulled down her sweatpants and underwear, rubbed her legs and digitally penetrated her, according to court papers. She said, "no," and pulled her legs to her chest, and when Raskin left the room, she got dressed and left the office, court papers say.

At home she told her mother she had been molested and the next day she reported what happened to police, court papers say.

Raskin turned himself in at the Springfield Police Department in February 2018 before being taken to the Union County Jail.

This article originally appeared on MyCentralJersey.com: NJ acupuncturist convicted of sexually assaulting patient loses appeal