Former Owner of the Academy for Mixed Martial Arts Arrested on Sex Charges
The former owner of the Academy of Mixed Martial Arts in Ocean Springs has been arrested a second time on child sex crime charges. On Tuesday, US Marshals in Florida arrested Todd Allen Pisarich on seven new charges:
- Four counts of sexual battery
- Two counts of unlawful touching of a child
- One count of attempted unlawful touching
Pisarich was arrested in April 2017 on two counts of sexual battery of a child while in a position of trust. He was free on bonds of $40,000 and a no-contact order prior to his arrest in Florida. He is currently being held with no bond while awaiting extradition from Milton, FL back to Mississippi.
The first charges were brought based on alleged sexual assault from October 16, 2016. The victim in this case was not one of his students. No information has been released regarding the victim or victims involved in the most recent charges.
Legal Recourse For Victims of Sexual Abuse by Martial Arts Instructors
Brian Kent of AbuseGuardian.com is a former sex crimes prosecutor who now directly represents survivors of sexual violence in civil lawsuits. We’ve asked him to discuss the legal options available to victims of sexual abuse by martial arts instructors:
Tragically, sexual predators are often found in positions of trust. We regularly see this in cases involving sexual abuse committed by teachers, coaches, instructors, and others who regularly work with children. The victims of these heinous crimes deserve justice for the trauma they’ve suffered. Along with prosecuting the perpetrator, it’s also important to consider whether any third parties are partially responsible for failing to prevent the abuse.
In cases where an instructor in a martial arts studio, dance studio, or another business sexually abuses young students, the business may also be considered liable for the abuse if their negligence played a role in enabling the abuse to occur. For example, if management was notified of alleged sexual misconduct by the employee but failed to investigate the claims or contact law enforcement, the victims may have grounds for a lawsuit.
If you or a loved one is a survivor of child sexual abuse, you can find justice for the trauma you and your family have suffered. To learn more about your legal options, consider contacting one of our experienced sexual abuse victims attorneys for a free consultation.