Tag: Massage Luxe

The Steps to Take After Being Sexually Assaulted by a Massage Therapist

Massage Sexually assaulted

Attorney Adam Horowitz is among the most experienced attorneys in the country in representing survivors of sexual assault by massage therapists (otherwise known as masseurs or masseuses).  Our law firm has represented dozens of people sexually assaulted by massage therapists and obtained justice in countless cases against large national chain spas, luxury hotels, and local spas.  An explosive Buzzfeed News investigation in which Adam Horowitz was quoted blew the cover off the massage industry and exposed the fact that over 180 people had reported sexual misconduct at Massage Envy franchises nationwide.  Since that time, the number of abuse claimants has continued to soar.

We have handled sexual misconduct cases involving incidents at Massage Envy, Hand & Stone, Massage Green, Massage LuXe, Elements Massage, Massage Heights, and many other locations.  In some cases. we have represented multiple victims of a single massage therapist.  It is often the case that after one client comes forward with an account of assault and then additional victims of the same perpetrator gain the courage and strength to come forward as well.  There is strength in numbers and having the courage to expose your perpetrator may provide support to other victims in telling their story.

All sexual contact by massage therapists during a professional setting is prohibited.  For  instance, Section 480.0485, Florida Statutes, provides as follows:

Sexual misconduct in the practice of massage therapy. — The massage therapist-patient relationship is founded on mutual trust. Sexual misconduct in the practice of massage therapy means violation of the massage therapist-patient relationship through which the massage therapist uses that relationship to induce or attempt to induce the patient to engage, or to engage or attempt to engage the patient, in sexual activity outside the scope of practice or the scope of generally accepted examination or treatment of the patient. Sexual misconduct in the practice of massage therapy is prohibited.

In most jurisdictions, sexual contact by a massage therapist is a crime and can result in the massage therapist losing his professional license.  In addition to contacting a civil attorney to find out your rights in a lawsuit, there are others to whom you should also report a sexual assault by a massage therapist:

  1. Notify the police department or other law enforcement agency in the city where the massage occurred.  It is important that you report the assault in full detail to criminal authorities so that the massage therapist can be exposed and held criminally responsible where appropriate.  In criminal cases, there is a high burden of proof. Not every perpetrator will be criminally charged, but it is important to get the report on record. It could cost the therapist his job or prevent him from committing abuse in the future.
  2. Notify the Department of Health or other licensing agency in the state where the massage therapist is licensed. You should submit a report in writing detailing all inappropriate contact initiated by the massage therapist.  Remember — it is not your fault that the massage therapist touched you in a sexual manner and it is not your fault if you did not immediately stop the perpetrator.  It is also not your fault if you did not immediately report the incident while you were still figuring out how to process these events.  When you go into a massage, you are expecting a relaxing experience from a trained professional.  You are not expecting the massage therapist to initiate sexual contact.  In most jurisdictions, the Department of Health or Board of Massage Therapy will commence an investigation of the massage therapist upon receiving a sexual assault allegation.  The Department is authorized to impose a variety of remedies, ranging from removing a message therapist’s licenses to suspension to public reprimand.  Sanctions against a massage therapist may become a public record and you can protect other clients from being exposed to a potential sexual assault by reporting an assault to the Department of Health.
  3. Contact a therapist.  After a traumatic event such as being sexually assaulted during a massage, it is typical to have feelings of anxiety, stress, intrusive thoughts, depression, restlessness or fear, making it difficult to adjust or cope for some time afterwards. In particular, survivors of sexual trauma may experience severe feelings of anxiety, stress, or fear, known as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). While it is natural to have some of these symptoms after a traumatic event, if they last more than a few weeks and become an ongoing problem, it might be PTSD. As important as it is to notify an attorney and civil authorities about a sexual trauma, there is no substitute for also receiving therapy from a trained professional.

If you have a been sexually assaulted in a spa or during a massage, or if you know someone who has, please contact our law firm at (954) 641-2100 or send an email to attorney Adam Horowitz at adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com

Marc DeTomaso Horowitz Law

Massage Luxe Employee Found Guilty of Inappropriately Touching Client During Massage in Bonita Springs

A Fort Myers, Florida jury found massage therapist Marc DeTomaso guilty of battery for violating a female customer during a massage in February 2017 at Massage Luxe in Bonita Springs.  The customer reported that DeTomaso forced his face between her legs and performed oral sex on her during the last five minutes of the massage appointment without her consent.  The victim reported the incident to Massage Luxe management who called the police. DeTomaso fled the spa before the police arrived.

The State Attorney presented evidence at trial that DNA matching DeTomaso was in a rape kit administered on the woman right after the incident. Judge Joseph Fuller sentenced DeTomaso to one year in jail, as well as court and medical costs associated with the victim’s exams.  DeTomaso, age 56, had been licensed as a massage therapist in Florida since 2000.  His massage therapy license was revoked by the Florida Department of Health in May 2018 on account of this incident.

Jurors heard testimony from the victim and another woman who filed a sexual misconduct complaint against DeTomaso about an encounter that occurred about a month before the February 2017 incident. That woman said she was inspired to notify authorities of the encounter when she saw on the news that DeTomaso was charged with sexual battery.

Sex abuse attorney Adam Horowitz is experienced in filing lawsuits on behalf of victims of sex assault by massage therapists, including at Massage LuXeIf you have a been a victim of sexual assault in a spa or during a massage, or if you know someone who has, please contact our law firm at (954) 641-2100 or send an email to sexual abuse lawyer Adam Horowitz at adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com. 



MassageLuXE Chanse Travers Horowitz Law

Massage Therapist’s License Restricted Due to Sexual Misconduct Claim

The Florida Department of Health Board of Massage Therapy has issued an Emergency Order restricting the license of Chanse Travers in response to a sexual misconduct claim involving Travers’ employment at MassageLuXe in Lakewood Ranch, Florida.  As a result of the Order, Travers is immediately prohibited from practicing massage therapy on female clients.

According to the Order, Travers used the massage therapist-patient relationship to engage or attempt to engage a patient in sexual activity when he exposed  and rubbed the patient’s breasts and nipples without her consent and asked to suck on her nipples.  The patient reported the alleged misconduct immediately after the appointment. This incident is reported to have occurred at the MassageLuXe located at 8378 Market Street in Lakewood Ranch, Florida on August 10, 2018.  Travers’ employment at MassageLuXe was terminated on account of this claim.  Travers has been licensed as a massage therapist in Florida since 2009 according to Department of Health records.

We commend this alleged victim for having the courage to come forward to report this incident.  Patients of massage therapists are placed in isolated, vulnerable settings where they can be subject to abuse by their massage therapists.  Due to the potential for abuse that is inherent under these circumstances, massage therapists must possess good judgment and good moral character
in order to safely and professionally practice massage therapy.

If you have a been a victim of sexual assault in a spa or during a massage at Massage Envy, MassageLuXe, Hand & Stone, or any other location offering a massage, or if you know someone who has, please contact our law firm at (954) 641-2100 or send an email to sexual abuse lawyer Adam Horowitz at adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com

Sex Battery Charges Filed against Broward County Masseur Employed at Massage LuXe in Coral Springs

Rayniel Hernandez arrestBroward County massage therapist, Rayniel Lazaro Hernandez Basulto, is facing criminal charges that he sexually assaulted a female client at a Massage LuXe franchise located at 4637 University Drive in Coral Springs, Florida.

According to law enforcement records, the client used a Groupon for the service at Massage LuXe in February 2017 and asked for a female massage therapist.  She told police she felt uncomfortable when a male masseur entered the treatment room, but allowed him to begin performing the service, police said.

During the massage, the alleged victim reported that the massage therapist interested his fingers into her vagina and also masturbated on her.  The woman told police she was so frightened that she froze and could not react during the alleged assault, the police report said. Upon the massage therapist exiting the room, however, the alleged victim promptly reported the incident to Massage LuXe’s manager and requested that her account be deleted so that the masseur could not contact her in the future.  The alleged victim them went to the police department and made a report.  Hernandez Basulto at first denied the client’s accusations and then cried and was remorseful, police said. He eventually told a detective that he did what she had described, police said.

After the arrest was made, an additional victim came forward to Department of Health reporting that Mr. Hernandez Basulto engaged in similar acts with her in January 2017.  According to that victim, she immediately called Massage LuXe and informed the staff of what occurred.

According to the Florida Department of Health, Rayniel Lazaro Hernandez obtained his Massage Therapist license in December 2015.  An Emergency Order restricting his license was entered on February 24, 2017 which prohibits him from practicing massage therapy on any female clients.

Sex abuse attorney Adam Horowitz is experienced in filing lawsuits on behalf of victims of sex assault by massage therapists, including at Massage LuXeIf you have a been a victim of sexual assault in a spa or during a massage, or if you know someone who has, please contact our law firm at (954) 641-2100 or send an email to sexual abuse lawyer Adam Horowitz at adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com.