Many clients claim they were sexually assaulted at Massage Envy

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Massage Envy is facing dozens of allegations regarding sexual assault and mishandling complaints. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Massage Envy is facing dozens of allegations regarding sexual assault and mishandling complaints. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Some of the other allegations are even more disturbing, with women claiming they were either groped, fondled or sexually molested. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Some of the other allegations are even more disturbing, with women claiming they were either groped, fondled or sexually molested. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Miguel Vega said the scandal surrounding Message Envy shows how important it is for clients to trust their massage therapists. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Miguel Vega said the scandal surrounding Message Envy shows how important it is for clients to trust their massage therapists. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
NEAR SCOTTSDALE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

According to a BuzzFeed news investigation, more than 180 women claim their massage therapist turned into sexual predators at Massage Envy locations around the country.

The Scottsdale-based company is also accused of mishandling or ignoring many of the complaints.

Susan Ingram is one of the women claiming they were sexually assaulted by their massage therapist.

"He lifted up my body, groped both of my breasts roughly and aggressively," said Ingram. "He put his hands down to the lower part of my body."

Some of the other allegations are even more disturbing, with women claiming they were either groped, fondled or sexually molested.

Massage Envy's corporate office is based in Scottsdale.

The company released this statement:

 "Each of these incidents is heartbreaking for us and for the franchisees that operate Massage Envy locations, and we will never stop looking for ways to help our franchisees provide a safe environment at Massage Envy franchise locations. The article references 180 reported incidents. These occurred over a span of 15 plus years and 125 million massages. But, we believe that even ONE incident is too many, so we are constantly listening, learning and evaluating how we can continue to strengthen our policies with respect to handling of these issues.”

Miguel Vega is a massage therapist in Phoenix.

He said the scandal surrounding Message Envy shows how important it is for clients to trust their massage therapists.

"It's unsettling," said Vega. "It's very upsetting to hear therapists are using that time when a person is most vulnerable and taking advantage of that. It just kind of puts a dent on those of us that are really doing what we feel is good for the human body."

The investigation was based on allegations over the past 15 years and there are currently several lawsuits pending.

Adam Horowitz, a lawyer who has handled more than two dozen sexual misconduct lawsuits involving Massage Envy, said Monday that he received 25 calls from alleged new victims following the report's publication.

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Copyright 2017 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


Jason Barry
Jason Barry has been reporting in the Valley since 1997.

Click to learn more about Jason.

Jason Barry

Jason Barry has been reporting in the Valley since 1997.

He is a nine-time Rocky Mountain Emmy Award winner who is best known for his weekly Dirty Dining reports, which highlight local restaurants with major health code violations.

Jason was born in Los Angeles and graduated from the University of Miami.

An avid sports fan, Jason follows the Diamondbacks, Cardinals and Suns with his wife, Karen, and son, Joshua.

His favorite stories to cover are the station’s Pay it Forward segments, which reward members of the community with $500 for going ‘above and beyond’ the call of duty to help others.

Jason, started his career at WBTW-TV in Florence, SC before moving to WALA-TV in Mobile, AL, was named the Associated Press Reporter of the Year in 2002.

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