The sexual misconduct claim in the Upstate is one of at least 180 others nationwide, alleging sexual misconduct against Massage Envy spas, their employees and the national company, per an investigative report by the website BuzzFeed News.
One South Florida woman is sharing her story of how she was sexually assaulted at Massage Envy, which faces lawsuits over alleged assaults and misconduct by employed therapists. More than 180 women have filed claims, ranging from inappropriate touching, groping, and kissing, to forced digital and oral penetration.
FOX40 has reached out to the owners of the Elk Grove Massage Envy franchises that have pending sexual assault lawsuits.
"Each of these incidents are heartbreaking for us and for the franchisees that operate Massage Envy locations".
In September, a massage therapist at a Massage Envy in Washington, D.C., was arrested and charged with first-degree sexual abuse after a client reported an alleged sexual assault.
Numerous victims say the company's response to the allegations was insulting.
Christopher Rosario, who worked at the Massage Envy in Bend, is now embroiled in three civil lawsuits and one criminal case related to sex abuse allegations at the massage spa.
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"The day changed my life forever", Ingram said in an interview with ABC News.
News 4 is not aware of any other allegations involving Massage Envy franchises in Tennessee.
Deiter was later sentenced to up to 13 years for assaulting Ingram and eight other women.
After five years, Kandice Martellaro says she can't shake the anger over what happened to her at Massage Envy and how it was handled. After driving home sobbing, she called the spa to report the sexual assault. But overall, Melanie Hansen, general counsel of Massage Envy Franchising, said the company has worked hard to create the industry's "most stringent, rigorous policies" for hiring, screening, and training therapists.
"They don't mandate that all their franchises report incidents of sexual assault to law enforcement", he says. "It's why we are constantly listening, learning and looking at how we can do more, including how we support franchised locations with best practices in handling these incidents and supporting their clients".
She made the call to police after the manager allegedly turned a blind eye to her complaint.
Until this year, the state board only had the authority to regulate individuals, not businesses.