CBS News has reported that a martial arts instructor has been charged with sexually abusing a 14-year-old student at Lion Choi's Martial Arts located at 2733 Annapolis Rd unit d, Hanover, MD 21076.
Police arrested 42-year-old Steve Choi on August 16, 2022. A report was made in September 2021, when the victim was 17. She alleged that the instructor began abusing her when she was 14 in June 2018 and continued until September 2019. The report suggested that Choi groomed the minor by treating her special and even promised her a scholarship. The victim was hesitant to report the abuse because she knew the instructor's wife and children, and Choi told her it would "ruin his life."
Attorney contributor Aaron Blank files sex abuse lawsuits for victims and their families seeking justice in Maryland. During a recent interview, Aaron highlighted when victims sexually abused by taekwondo instructors could file a lawsuit.
"Taekwondo, karate, and other martial art studios have a legal duty to ensure the safety of their students. Studios should be equipped with security cameras and all instructors should undergo background checks. Sexual predators have easy access to vulnerable victims and will try to gain employment in these fields. Sadly, some taekwondo instructors abuse their positions of power and trust to exploit their victims. Many times this is due to the lack of security at the studio."
"There are legal rights available for victims of sex abuse and their families. An investigation can lead to criminal charges if you report abuse. The studio could be held liable if it did not offer safety precautions. If the instructor was able to obtain a license without a background check, the licensing agency could be held liable. Victims sexually abused by a taekwondo instructor can learn more about their legal rights by discussing their situation with an experienced sex abuse victim lawyer."