Locals React to Massage Envy Parlor Sex Assault Allegations

Image Massage Envy
A therapist walks to the massage rooms at Massage Envy in a strip mall in Columbia Missouri in September 2006. L.G. Patterson AP file
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28 November, 2017

According to BuzzFeed News, Ingram is just one of more than 180 women who "have filed sexual assault lawsuits, police reports, and state board complaints against Massage Envy spas, their employees, and the national company".

In past assault cases brought against Massage Envy, Buzzfeed says lawyers have argued that despite the fact that spas are independently owned, "it's the parent company that trains employees in Massage Envy policies, sets operational standards such as the need to investigate internally, and monitors the progress of those investigations - and that as a result, the parent company should be held accountable for those policies' failures".

The most disturbing part, like many stories of sexual assault that have come to light over the past several weeks, is the swiftness with which Massage Envy reportedly tried to sweep the reports under the rug.

BuzzFeed reported massage therapists employed by Massage Envy spas across the country sexually assaulted women by unwanted and unsolicited groping, petting and oral contact.

There are more than 1,100 total Massage Envy locations serving over 1.5 million members.

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"She said in a very apparently scripted response, 'We invite you in to talk about your services.' And I said no, no, no you don't understand, '" said Ingram.

Another woman in OR said that her massage therapist also sexually assaulted and ejaculated on her. An hour after her assault, Ingram called the Massage Envy location where it occurred. The report cites incidents of groping and other violations. Ingram told NBC News and BuzzFeed she was dismissed by the West Chester location's manager when reporting the incident.

The chain also told USA Today that it recommends franchisees "support and enlist clients who choose to report assaults to police".

"It should be something that they should train for and have an understanding of how to respond", Ingram said. Numerous accusers have now sued the chain, and subsequent court records reportedly show that multiple women had complained to Massage Envy about Deiter's actions prior to Ingram's report. "But, we believe that even ONE incident is too many, so we are constantly listening, learning, and evaluating how we can continue to strengthen our policies with respect to handling of these issues".

According to a report from BuzzFeed News, the women say therapists at the popular chain groped them and committed other sexual acts.


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