Tag: Sarasota Sexual Abuse Attorney

VENICE MASSAGE THERAPIST ARRESTED FOR SEXUAL ABUSE OF DISABLED WOMAN

VENICE MASSAGE THERAPIST ARRESTED FOR SEXUAL ABUSE OF DISABLED WOMAN

In early November 2020, Sarasota Police arrested massage therapist, Mark Douglas Elliott, 64, of the 400 block of Appian Way in Venice, for allegedly committing sexual battery on a disabled patient. According to records, Elliott, a licensed massage therapist since December 2011, was hired in April 2020 to treat the physically incapacitated woman who suffered a traumatic brain injury.

According to court records, her injury requires she receive 24-hour nursing care and outpatient therapies, including massage therapy. She is entirely dependent on others to move as a result of paralysis down the right side of her body. She also suffers from cognitive delays and short-term memory loss.

The victim told police that Elliott repeatedly sexually battered her from January to May 2020 during scheduled visits. He reportedly asked her to not tell her mother, his wife, or other nurses about the abuse. Due to her memory loss, she couldn’t remember exact details of past incidents, but was able to remember the last one.

Letters from the victim’s psychologist state she has “severe physical and cognitive limitations” and “is completely dependent on her mother and staff for all daily wants and needs.”

The psychologist further explained to police that she has the emotional and cognitive abilities of a young teen. She requires around the clock care to keep her healthy and safe. Police said Elliott knew about her inability to consent to sexual activity, and took advantage of her diminished cognitive and physical state.

When clients book a massage, it is usually to decompress from the stresses of life, or as in this case, to round out a medical treatment program. They trust that the licensed massage therapist hired is safe to engage with the public. It is unacceptable, immoral and unlawful for any therapist to touch a client in a sexual manner.

Horowitz Law has filed numerous sexual misconduct claims against massage therapists on behalf of clients who were inappropriately touched during a massage. If you have been a victim of sexual assault or sexual battery during a massage, or if you know someone who has, please contact our law firm at (888) 283-9922 or send an e-mail to sexual abuse lawyer Adam Horowitz at adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com for a free consultation.

Former Sarasota bishop arrested, charged with sexually assaulting children over forty years

Former Sarasota bishop arrested, charged with sexually assaulting children over forty years

On Thursday, January 2, 2020, Sarasota Police arrested former bishop, Henry Lee Porter after multiple investigations “demonstrated more than four decades of children and adults suffering sexual abuse by Henry Lee Porter Sr..” Porter, 72, was arrested for one count of alleged sexual battery of a child under 12 years old, a first-degree felony punishable by up to life in prison. 

Sarasota detectives had conducted a string of criminal investigations dating back to 1990 in response to multiple victims telling investigators throughout the years that Porter forced oral and anal sex on them and forced them to reciprocate. The most recent investigation leading to Porter’s arrest was initiated in October 2019, when Sarasota police received notification of a Facebook video titled “Art of Manipulation — My survival of Molestation” from a user who said he was sexually abused as a child by a bishop at Westcoast Center for Human Development. 

According to court documents, the victim told detectives that his first memory of sexual abuse started at 15 and continued until he was 21. The abuse involved “fondling, masturbation, oral and anal sex” with guidance from Porter. It often occurred in Porter’s inner office, in the Westcoast Center for Human Development. 

Police interviewed more than 20 similar “fact victims”, all boys ages 14 to young adults of various ages who provided statements outlining the abuse by Porter in various locations including on cross country mission trips and on church-sponsored trips. Prior investigations revealed an anonymous letter that named 40 of Porter’s child sexual abuse victims. 

Porter founded the Westcoast Gospel Chorus and was pastor of the church he incorporated in 1971 for 45 years. He stepped down in June 2016. Porter is  currently being held without bail, and the investigation is ongoing. If you have any information, please contact Sarasota Police.

The role of pastors in the church is to support the spiritual needs of their parishioners. Education and often counseling and guidance in times of need are responsibilities with which they are entrusted. A trusted clergyman who sexually violates young children has no place working in the Church. Any ministry in which such a crime is committed must take responsibility for failing to properly screen potential clergy and protect its parishioners. 

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by clergy. If you or a loved one was sexually abused, raped or sexually molested by a priest or other clergy, contact our law firm at (888) 283-9922 or send an e-mail to sexual abuse lawyer Adam Horowitz at adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com for a free consultation.

 

Nicholas McLoughlin Horowitz Law

Lawsuit Filed Against Diocese of Venice for Alleged Sexual Assault by Father Nicholas McLoughlin

Horowitz Law has filed a lawsuit in Sarasota County on behalf of an adult female client alleging that she was sexually assaulted in April 2018 by Diocese of Venice priest Nicholas McLoughlin in the confessional at Our Lady of Grace in Avon Park, Florida.  McLoughlin, known to parishioners as “Father Nick”, was the Pastor at Our Lady of Grace at the time of the alleged incident.

According to the Complaint, at the start of confession, Father McLoughlin abruptly stood up, approached the parishioner and reached out to touch her.  As he reached out to touch her, she thought that Father McLoughlin was going to make the sign of the cross on her forehead.  Much to her surprise and dismay, Father McLoughlin proceeded to forcefully grope L.B.’s right breast and aggressively kiss her.  She yelled at Father McLoughlin to stop and she struggled to break away from his power grip.

This is not the first time that Father Nicholas McLoughlin has been accused of sexual misconduct.  In November 2018, the Diocese of Venice announced that McLoughlin was being placed on administrative leave pending an investigation into a complaint alleging that he molested a child at Corpus Christi Parish in Temple Terrace, Florida in the 1970’s.  At that time, McLoughlin would have been under the supervision of the Diocese of St. Petersburg.

Additionally, in 1997, McLoughlin was named as a co-defendant in a lawsuit, in which the Catholic Diocese of Venice agreed to pay $500,000 to settle a suit with a former Port Charlotte altar boy who was molested by Nicholas McLoughlin’s brother, Ed McLoughlin, then assistant pastor at St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church where Nicholas McLoughlin was pastor at the time.  The choir director was also accused of molestation.

Nicholas McLoughlin served as pastor of Corpus Christi Parish, Temple Terrace from 1973 to 1982. He previously served as associate pastor of St. John Vianney, St. Pete Beach and pastor of Bishop Barry and Notre Dame High Schools in St. Petersburg from June 1972 to August 1973.  He was appointed Pastor of Our Lady of Grace in March 2007.

Horowitz Law files civil lawsuits representing children and adults who were victims of sexual abuse by priests, ministers, rabbis, deacons, nuns, or other clergy of any faith. If you or someone you know was a victim of sexual abuse or sexual assault at a church or other religious organization, please contact our law firm at (888) 283-9922 or send a confidential email to adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com