Were you or a loved one sexually assaulted at a Massage Envy in California? You are not alone. Our dedicated assault attorneys have filed a major new lawsuit against Massage Envy, representing six different women who say they were sexually assaulted during massage sessions.
We can help you come forward. We believe you, and we know your story should be told. This was not your fault. Contact our experienced Massage Envy sexual abuse law firm today for a free consultation.
In a major new lawsuit, the attorney's Bobby Thompson and Brian Kent, members of Abuse Guardian, have filed suit against Massage Envy, along with six franchise owners in California, claiming that the national massage spa chain failed to protect unsuspecting clients from dangerous sexual predators.
Mr. Thompson is a California licensed attorney-at-law, and Mr. Kent is an attorney licensed to practice in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, and Illinois, and has been granted special permission by the Courts of California to represent clients in this case in California.
The lawsuit includes the claims of six separate women, all of whom claim to have been sexually assaulted during massage sessions at California Massage Envy locations. Now, they're filing suit, accusing the franchise's corporate office of creating an environment and culture in which sexual abuse complaints were ignored and concealed, rather than acted upon appropriately.
The six women are being represented by attorneys from Thompson Law Offices, P.C., a California-based plaintiffs' law firm, and Laffey, Bucci & Kent, LLP, lead sponsors of AbuseGuardian.com.
In a press release announcing the new litigation, the attorneys expressed their sincere hope to "stop a [California]-wide epidemic of sexual assaults occurring at Massage Envy locations by Massage Envy's massage therapists." They also call on other women to step forward, writing:
"We would implore any women in [San Mateo] County or throughout [California] who experienced any improper conduct by Brandon Davis or other Massage Envy masseuses to come forward and join the brave women that have already spoken up and help us put an end to the epidemic of sexual assaults occurring at Massage Envy locations in Burlingame and throughout the State of California."
Were you or a loved one sexually assaulted during a massage session at Massage Envy? We believe you, and we believe that your story must be told. You are not alone. Our experienced sexual assault attorneys are here to help and support you in any way we can.
To learn more about pursuing justice, contact our dedicated legal team today for a free consultation. We understand the powerful range of emotions that being sexually assaulted can cause, from pain and grief to embarrassment and shame. Just know that this was not your fault. You did not deserve to be mistreated. We can help you find your voice again and take a stand.
Hailing from Los Angeles and San Francisco, the six plaintiffs claim to have been assaulted at six separate Massage Envy locations in California:
One of the women, named as Jane Doe in court documents, says she was forcibly raped by Brandon Davis during a massage session at the franchise's Burlingame location.
As the attorneys note, Davis was recently arrested by local police. He is being held on suspicion of having assaulted 13 different women during his tenure at the Burlingame Massage Envy location. Despite this alleged history of heinous assaults, Davis was allowed to remain an employee at the Massage Envy franchise. The plaintiff says she was assaulted by the man after multiple sexual assault complaints had already been lodged against him.
"In another case," the attorneys write, "a woman was sexually assaulted by a Massage Envy massage therapist at Massage Envy - Elk Grove [...] even though there was a report to the franchisee and [Massage Envy corporate] that the therapist had sexually assaulted other female customers."
We've heard similar stories of sexual assault across the country. In a landmark investigation, Katie J.M. Baker, an investigative reporter for Buzzfeed News, found evidence to suggest that over 180 women have been assaulted during massage sessions at Massage Envy locations across the country.
In report after report, these women say their complaints were ignored by Massage Envy. According to Baker's reporting, Massage Envy rarely does enough to keep dangerous sexual predators out of the massage room. Instead, massage therapists who have been accused of sexual assault are quietly moved to other locations, or just allowed to remain in employment. In several cases, men who were accused of sexual assault have even been re-hired by the company's franchise owners.
In fact, Massage Envy has a corporate sexual assault policy that serves to protect and enable sexual predators, plaintiffs say in their lawsuit. Massage Envy's franchise owners are instructed to handle sexual abuse complaints "in-house," rather than inform the appropriate law enforcement authorities.
"One of the reasons this epidemic of sexual assaults of female customers by Massage Envy therapists exists is as a result of [Massage Envy's] incomprehensible policy and procedure of directing franchisees to conceal allegations of inappropriate sexual behavior involving its massage therapists and directing franchisees not to report said allegations to local law enforcement and / or state massage therapy boards in order to 'protect the brand.' "
In order to "protect" its brand, the women claim, Massage Envy has repeatedly lied to customers and the public about its actual sexual assault policy. Instead of informing the public about the problem of sexual assault at its franchise locations, the women allege, Massage Envy and its franchise owners "intentionally and falsely" told the public that "safety is at the core of their company's mission."
In fact, Massage Envy represents itself as having a "zero-tolerance policy" toward sexual assault. In reality, the women say, nothing could be further from the truth.
Why, if such a zero-tolerance policy was in place, would male massage therapists accused of sexual assault be allowed to remain in their employment? Why would alleged sexual predators, like Brandon Davis, still be working at a Massage Envy franchise location, even after having reportedly assaulted 13 different women? These are the pointed questions raised in the complaint, which was filed in the Superior Court of California, County of San Mateo on August 20, 2018.