For the 2nd Crime Doctor see: Anica Balcescu
A prominent Gotham physician, Dr. Matthew Thorne was a prosperous man who turned to crime for the sheer thrill of it, to enliven an otherwise boring existence. Though he truly loved the practice of medicine, crime was like a narcotic to Thorne and he could not resist its lure. As the Crime Doctor, he provided criminals with insightful diagnoses.
Building his own Crime Clinic in a secret sub- basement beneath his town house, the crime doctor opened for business, offering Gotham's underworld a variety of services, from treatment and hospitalization of wounded criminals on the lam from the law to unique diagnostic services, where the Doctor would plan a crime for others in exchange for 25% of the take. If the Crime Doctor had to make a "house call" to rescue criminals who had been caught in the act, his share went up to 50% of the loot. Anonymously, Thorne turned over almost all of this ill-gotten money to charities, since his interest was the thrill of the crime, not the bounties.
During a confrontation with the Dynamic Duo, Matthew honored his Hippocratic oath by performing a life saving appendectomy on a victim then allowed himself to be arrested. After one month, Matthew escaped Blackgate and took his practice on the road. From his mobile trailer, the Crime Doctor continued working with the criminal element until his operation was exposed and the Dynamic Duo came charging in. Robin was shot by one of Matthew's men and Matthew killed the henchman because that was a violation of his moral code. Matthew saved Robin but this time he managed to escape capture.
Matthew's new base of operations was now in sunny California. Matthew was called in by one his underlings to save the life of his wife. However, Matthew refused because he couldn't risk exposure and the underling's wife died. When Matthew committed his latest caper in California, his widowed underling mortally wounded Matthew. Batman arrived at the crime scene but he was too late to save Matthew who bled out from his wounds.
On Earth-One, the Crime Doctor was renamed Bradford Thorne. During his criminal career, he was called in one day to treat Bruce Wayne who suffered a shoulder injury. Later on, during a confrontation with the Batman, Bradford noticed that the Batman's suit was torn and spotted the bandage work he had performed on Bruce Wayne earlier. It was at this point, Bradford deduced that Batman and Bruce Wayne are one in the same. Bradford's revelation about the Batman's secret identity leaked out and was brought to Sterling T. Silversmith's attention. Silversmith was a master smuggler until Batman came to Gotham and interrupted his business.
Silversmith took it upon himself to have Bradford poisoned with quicksilver and offered him the antidote if he would give up the Batman's true identity. Before he could answer, Batman burst onto the scene, defeating Silversmith and rushing Thorne to a hospital. Although Batman saved Thorne's life, he could not save his mind which was affected by the quicksilver, leaving Thorne a helpless vegetable.
During Post-Crisis, Bradford appears to be much younger and has recovered from his vegetative state. As the younger brother of Rupert Thorne, Bradford resumed his criminal activities by opening a secret hospital for the criminal underworld but he no longer recalled Batman's secret identity. At one point, he performed plastic surgery on Paul Sloane and turned him into the Two-Face doppelganger Charlatan. His oath of "do no harm" no longer applied to him. Bradford would withhold treatment when it suited him for getting information or he would use slipshod surgical techniques.
His explanation for wearing star shaped shades is because they are a souvenir from his first victim Katherine Wheyhall, a nurse at his hospital who wanted to report Bradford's illegal activities to the police. Later on, Bradford is hired by Alexander Luthor's Secret Society, as a torturer. Bradford tortures the Secret Six but Catman resisted long enough to stab and blind Bradford in one eye then escape.
One Year Later
One year later, Bradford tries to defect from the Secret Society but Society sends Prometheus (Chad Graham) to make Bradford reconsider his position. Prometheus injures Bradford but he is rescued by the Birds of Prey who want his information on the Society. The Society decides to have the Crime Doctor's daughter Bethany captured and used as leverage. The Prometheus imposter (Chad Graham) captures Bradford from the hospital where he was being treated and forces him to watch as his daughter is tortured right in front of him. Fortunately, the Birds of Prey put a tracer on Bradford and they were able to track down Prometheus. Prometheus defeats the Birds of Prey but Bradford escapes from his bonds. He commits suicide in order to save his daughter and Lady Shiva takes Bethany on as her apprentice.
Powers & Abilities
The Crime Doctor is an average hand-to-hand combatant, but also carries a deadly array of modified hospital/surgical equipment. He usually carries around Surgical Clothing, with protects him to an extent from blunt damage and poisonous gases. It also protects him from leaving behind evidence of his crimes, such as fingerprints, or dust soiling his clothing. His head-mounted reflector can also distract and disorientate foes for a short period of time. His main weapon however, was his powerful injector gun that could either kill or render his enemies unconscious by emitting a vapor-like gas. As for transportation, the Crime Doctor used a fake ambulance so that he could easily speed away from the crime scene without police tracking him.