According to WY Daily, during a massage therapy session at MassageLuXe on Monticello Ave. in Williamsburg, a woman was sexually assaulted by a 48-year-old therapist at the facility.
Shawn Lamonte Robinson, who was without a license at the time of the incident, was arrested on December 18th, 2020. The Federation of State Massage Therapy Boards has documents showing MassageLuXe was made aware of previous complaints of sexual assaults involving Robinson.
Following the arrest, four more victims have come forward. Additionally, his past criminal record included a 2018 felony rape charge at another massage parlor.
Robinson is being held without bond at Virginia Peninsula Regional Jail.
Attorney contributor, Kevin Biniazan, represents victims of sexual abuse in lawsuits. In an interview, we asked Kevin to provide legal commentary regarding the options of victims sexually assaulted by a massage therapist:
"Massage therapy businesses provide a potential platform and environment for predators to assault patients sexually. Clients trust the professional to help, not harm them and are put in vulnerable positions during sessions. The easy access to customers gives way to hundreds of sexual abuse cases being reported within massage parlors. Victims must know they may have grounds for a civil lawsuit against the company."
"The clients' safety and a protected environment are parts of the legal obligation that massage parlors and spas must uphold. The therapists chosen and trusted to be hired must be licensed and qualified to work within the industry. When owners do not take proper precautions like detailed background checks, they can be considered liable when an employee sexually assaults a customer. A clear example of negligence is when a series of complaints against a specific therapist have been ignored, and they remain employed without an increase of security measures. If a victim's lawyer can prove negligence caused the sexual abuse, the victim may have grounds for a civil lawsuit."