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Surgeon allegedly chokes nurse with elastic cord at Long Island hospital

EAST MEADOW, NY — A surgeon at Nassau University Medical Center choked a 51-year-old nurse after an argument Monday, police said.

Venkatesh Sasthakonar allegedly choked a nurse with a cord at a hospital. (Nassau County Police)

Venkatesh Sasthakonar allegedly approached the nurse from behind and wrapped an elastic cord around her neck, officials said. He left the hospital and was arrested when he returned several hours later.

The nurse was treated for substantial pain to her neck, police said.

Sasthakonar, who works at the hospital as a bariatric surgeon, was charged with strangulation and assault. He was scheduled to be arraigned Tuesday.

Nassau University Medical Center suspended Sasthakonar, spokesperson Brian Finnegan said.

“Following the alleged incident that occurred on January 22, 2018, the hospital cooperated with the Nassau County Police Department,” Finnegan said. “At no time was patient safety affected.”