Doctor pleads guilty in assault on daughter's estranged husband

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CLEVELAND -- A doctor from Pennsylvania pleaded guilty today to one count of felonious assault for an attack on his daughter's estranged husband on Sept. 4 in Cleveland Heights.

He faces up to eight years in prison and a $15,000 fine.

Dr. Georges J. Bensimhon, 67, of Allentown, Pa., was indicted later that month on charges of attempted murder, attempted aggravated murder, kidnapping and felonious assault. His trial was scheduled to begin June 2.

According to evidence gathered by the Cleveland Heights Police Department, Bensimhon, an anesthesiologist, was masked and hiding outside the back door of Dr. Seth Hoffer's Dellwood Road home the morning of Sept. 4, 2013.

When Hoffer, a neurosurgeon at University Hospitals in Cleveland, went outside just before 6 a.m., the defendant attacked him with a pry bar and struck him repeatedly in the head.

Hoffer, 39, was bleeding profusely, but still managed to fend off his attacker and pin him to the ground. Then he yelled out for neighbors to call police.

When officers arrived, they arrested Bensimhon and found a cache of injectable sedatives and spinal syringes in his possession.

Bensimhon appeared in Cleveland Heights Municipal Court on Sept. 5 and was released on $500,000 bond. He also surrendered his U.S. and Israeli passports. The case was transferred to Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court.

Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Judge John J. Russo will sentence him July 1.

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