Local Crime, News, Police/Fire

Four more women accuse Swampscott nail salon employee of groping them

(Spenser Hasak)

SWAMPSCOTT — Four more women have accused a Humphrey Street nail salon employee of groping them during massages.

Tuan Le, 47, of Revere, had initially been accused by a 23-year-old woman of groping her during a massage on Sept. 22. The woman told police she had received a massage from Le in the past, but on this occasion, he allegedly reached underneath her bra and down the back of her pants to her buttocks. She said he had shut the front shades to the business before starting the massage, Swampscott Police Sgt. Tim Cassidy said.

The woman told police that the incident took place at Lee Nail Salon, located at 244 Humphrey St. — she had a nail appointment there, and while there, allegedly received the indecent massage from Le, an employee who goes by the name of David, Cassidy said.

The woman left the store and told police, who investigated the incident. Le was summoned to Lynn District Court in late October for three counts of indecent assault and battery and appeared in court for the first time earlier this month.

Following the incident, Swampscott Police urged anyone who thought they might be a victim of “David’s” to come forward and file a report or contact them. After news reports that revealed Le, or “David,” had been charged, four more women came forward with similar accusations of being touched inappropriately by him, police said.

Cassidy said the women are all in their 20s and 30s and that an arrest warrant was issued for Le on Monday. The four separate encounters happened in August of this year,  two were in July of this year and one woman reported an incident from six to eight years ago, according to Lynn District Court records.

Le was arrested after turning himself into Swampscott Police Tuesday morning. He was arraigned later that day on six counts of indecent assault and battery on a person 14 or older, Cassidy said.

Le pleaded not guilty and was released after posting $500 bail, according to his Salem-based defense attorney Daniel Gindes. Gindes said one of the accusers, from the alleged incident from six to eight years ago, is past the statute of limitations. He said his client denies the accusations leveled against him.

“The allegations are spurious and he (Le) looks forward to the opportunity to show the community that he is innocent,” Gindes said.

One woman told police that in August, she was left alone with Le. She had a dress on and wasn’t wearing underwear. She told police she had been getting a pedicure and had the dress tucked under her legs, but during the pedicure, Le massaged her leg, and went up and brushed his hands against her genital area, court records show.

When she pushed his hands away, he allegedly massaged her other legs and brushed her again. She told police he also allegedly touched her bare buttocks several times. The woman told police Le had asked her if he could give her a full body massage for free and that she declined. She received a text message from an unknown number following the incident, which read “when you come see me, it’s your best friend,” court records show.  

Another woman said she went to Lee Nail Salon in July and while getting a pedicure there, Le massaged her leg over her pants and while doing so, got very close to her genital area, but did not touch her there. She said she received a Facebook friend request from Le after the incident, but did not accept, court records show.

Another woman told police that in July, she went to the nail salon and while getting a pedicure from Le, he allegedly massaged her calf and then moved up her inner thigh near her genital area, prompting her to push her hand away, pay and leave the store, never to return, court records show.

A woman also reported a similar incident from six to eight years ago.

The first woman who accused Le told police she has received a massage from Le in the past, but on the Sept. 22 occasion, he allegedly shut the front shades to the business before starting the massage, saying something along the lines of “I don’t want anyone to see this.” The victim told police that she had told Le she was all set, but he proceeded to tell her “I’ll make you feel good,” according to a police report obtained at Lynn District Court.

She told police that she had explained she was extremely uncomfortable, but that Le continued what started as a neck massage, allegedly reaching underneath her bra and down the back of her pants to her buttocks. She told police she was extremely nervous and Le questioned her by asking her if she was OK, saying “this doesn’t mean anything,” and hugged her and kissed her on the cheek as she was leaving, asking “you are gonna come back, right?” The woman received text messages from Le following the incident, court records show.

Le was questioned by police following the Sept. 22 incident. He told police that he contacted the woman because “I thought I might have a problem with her” and explained that he was massaging her shoulders and then went down the front of her shirt. He told police he thought he slipped by accident and touched her breast under her bra. When asked if he also put his hands down the woman’s pants to her buttocks, he said “no she’s a liar,” court records show.

Police also reported talking to the nail salon’s owner, who reportedly looked at Le at one point and said, “I told you not not to touch them,” court records show.

Le is scheduled to return to court on January 8.

More Stories From Swampscott