On October 13, 2022, the Florida Department of Health (DOH) filed an Emergency Order restricting the massage therapy license of Leonard Manuel Lopez De La Torre. This restriction was in response to a report of sexual misconduct during a massage he performed while working at a St. Petersburg Massage Envy. The Order prohibits Lopez De La Torre from practicing massage therapy on female clients in Florida. Leonard Manuel Lopez De La Torre, 51, has been a licensed massage therapist in Florida since August 2018.
On August 2, 2022, Leonard Manuel Lopez De La Torre was arrested after a woman reported Lopez De La Torre sexually assaulted her during a massage. The St. Petersburg Police Department charged Lopez De La Torre with simple battery and booked him into the Pinellas County Jail. He was released after posting a $500 bail.
According to the Department of Health’s Emergency Order, Lopez De La Torre worked at the St. Petersburg Massage Envy on 4th Street on August 2, 2022, when he performed a 60-minute massage on a female client. During the massage, Lopez De La Torre allegedly reached under the client’s sheet, grabbed the client’s right breast, and pulled her nipple, causing minor redness to the area,” an arrest report states. The arrest affidavit said that an employee at Massage Envy confirmed the victim was the suspect’s client on the day of the offense.
Leonard Manuel Lopez de la Torre Allegedly Violated the Massage Therapist-Patient Relationship
When clients schedule a massage, it is to decompress from the stresses of life. They trust that the massage therapists employed at the spa are carefully vetted and safe to engage with the public. It is unacceptable, immoral, and unlawful for any employee to touch a client sexually. Clients of massage therapists are in an isolated setting, leaving them vulnerable and subject to abuse by their massage therapists.
Due to the potential for inherent abuse, under those circumstances, massage therapists must possess good judgment and moral character to practice massage therapy safely. Mr. Leonard Manuel Lopez de la Torre willfully abused his position as a massage therapist to sexually violate a woman who trusted him to act professionally and within the boundaries of generally accepted massage therapy and treatment. Mr. Lopez de la Torre’s violation of the massage therapist-patient relationship indicates that he lacks the good moral character and judgment necessary to practice massage therapy on female clients safely.
Horowitz Law has filed numerous sexual assault lawsuits against massage therapists for clients who were inappropriately touched at Massage Envy and various massage salons and spas. If you have been a victim of sexual assault or sexual battery during a massage, or if you know someone who has, contact our law firm at 888-283-9922 or send an email to sexual abuse lawyer Adam Horowitz for massage clients at [email protected] for a free consultation.