Woman Alleges Man Sexually Assaults Her During Massage
by Aundrea Cline-Thomas
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. - A woman told Murfreesboro Police she was sexually assaulted when she went to redeem a Groupon for a massage.
"During the investigation we believe we proved that he did sexually assault her," Murfreesboro Police spokesman Kyle Evans said. "And (he) was doing so under the pretense of a licensed professional which of course he was not."
Police arrested 24-year-old Augustus Ogiste II and charged him with sexual battery and the impersonation of a licensed professional.
NewsChannel 5 wanted to know how a person could be performing massages without a license.
Truu-Bluu was closed Wednesday afternoon, despite it being during regular business hours. So we called, and the person who answered refused to comment and hung up.
"The business was very difficult in the investigation," Evans said. "They did not cooperate, saying (Ogiste) was a subcontractor refusing to give us pertinent information regarding the case."
The Tennessee Health Department will now conduct its own criminal investigation into this business.
"Because of this, the business' practices and the actions of this impersonator we believe there could be other victims," Evans said.
Police said if there are other victims, they are encouraging them to speak up.
Here is some information you should know before going to a spa:
Owners of licensed establishments are responsible for ensuring that all persons who perform massage therapy in the establishment maintain current licensure. Massage therapists are required to display their licenses in a prominent place in the establishment.
Establishment owners are required to maintain in a centralized location a current copy of the certificate of renewal for each licensed massage therapist providing services at the establishment. A copy of any such certificate shall be made available upon request of any client.
To determine if an individual is licensed, consumers may visit our Licensure Verification website at http://health.state.tn.us/licensure/default.aspx. If the individual has been disciplined by the board, that information will be available on the site.
Consumers seeking massage therapy should be sure to visit a licensed massage establishment. Before treatment begins, clients can ask to see a massage therapist's license to ensure it is current.
Clients should have a conversation with the therapist before the massage session starts, covering exactly what treatment will be performed. During this conversation, the client should discuss any restrictions he or she want to place on the session.
If at any point during the treatment the client feels uncomfortable, he or she should advise the therapist immediately. If the therapist disregards concerns, the patient should leave immediately.