Ping Li Guilty of Being Creepy Massage Therapist to Lady Clients and Employee
Publicity from Ping Li's initial arrest prompted more victims to come forward.
Courtesy of the Orange County District Attorney's office
The co-owner/operator of Massage Clover in San Clemente was found guilty by a jury Tuesday of sexual battery of three lady clients and an employee as well as inappropriately touching a fourth female customer.
Four times between June 4 and Oct. 4 of 2014, Li committed sexual battery against three female clients who ranged in age from 20 to 57, according to prosecutor Jennifer Schaniel.
During massages that had the 51-year-old San Clemente resident alone with the customers, the therapist began touching their buttocks and crotches against their will and "for the purpose of sexual arousal, sexual gratification or sexual abuse," according to an Orange County District Attorney's office (OCDA) statement.
"He committed sexual battery against a female employee by coming up from behind her and touching her breast and vagina over her clothes when there were no other employees or customers around," the statement continues. "The defendant also inappropriately touched a fourth female client, by nearly touching her vagina during a massage."
The victims reported the crimes to the Orange County Sheriff's Department, and the investigation coupled with Schaniel's courtroom work led to Pi's conviction on four misdemeanor counts of sexual battery.
Originally charged with six counts of sexual battery, Li was found not guilty of one allegation because "the jury simply did not believe one of the victims," according to his defense attorney, Donald Matson.
Li faces up to two and a half years in jail and a $10,000 fine at his Sept. 3 sentencing in Newport Beach.
Get the ICYMI: Today's Top Stories Newsletter
Catch up on the day's news and stay informed with our daily digest of the most popular news, music, food and arts stories in Orange County, delivered to your inbox Monday through Friday.