• Massage therapist inappropriately touched customer, police say

    By: Mike Petchenik

    Updated:

    ROSWELL, Ga. - Roswell police have charged a massage therapist they said inappropriately touched a customer.

    Now, police are asking other potential victims to come forward. 

    Channel 2’s Mike Petchenik first broke the story about the arrest of Brian Sams on Twitter Thursday. 

    Police said that Sams has been charged with sexual battery after an incident at Massage Envy in Roswell. 

    The incident happened over the summer but police said a long investigation finally led to an arrest.

    Petchenik spoke to women who were appalled by allegations that a massage therapist at the location on Holcomb Bridge Road committed sexual battery on a customer in July.

    "I personally don't understand why a woman would go to male massage therapist. I don't,” said Marlene Hillmann.

    Officer Lisa Holland said the victim told the store and police that Sams was the suspect and after a three-month investigation, detectives arrested Sams last week.

    "There may be other victims out there who were embarrassed to come forward or who didn't think there was anything the police could do for them,” Holland said.


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    Channel 2 Action News went to the address listed on Sams' arrest report but nobody answered the door.

    The owner of the Massage Envy franchise referred us to a corporate office but we got a voicemail for the company's legal counsel.

    Natasha Fortune once worked in a competitor spa and she said if the allegations are true, Sams shouldn't be allowed to work in the field.

    "Your clients are half naked laying on your bed, so you have to be trustworthy,” Fortune said.

    Police said they're glad this victim was brave enough to speak up.

    "We take these allegations seriously and we will always investigate these cases,” Holland said.

    Every massage therapist in Georgia must be licensed by the state. 

    Records show Sams' massage therapy license is still active.

    Petchenik reached out to the secretary of state's office and a spokeswoman confirmed they are aware of his arrest but by law can't comment on whether anyone has filed a complaint.

    In 2014, Channel 2 Action News spoke to a victim of a similar incident in Cobb County.

    "I just completely froze. The world just stopped moving,” said Victoria King.

    In our investigation, we documented more than 50 allegations of sexual assault by Massage Envy therapists in 13 states, including seven in Georgia. 

    At the time, the company said its invested millions in personnel, programs, policies and procedures designed to stop the problem.

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