UPDATE: Massage Therapist, Trevor Jordon Stevens, New Charges of Sexually Assaulting Patient
On August 3, 2021, Halifax Police charged Trevor Jordan Stevens, a registered massage therapist, with the sexual assault of one of his patients that occurred during massage therapy appointments between 2017 and 2019.
On August 16, 2021, Stevens was charged with three counts of sexual assault, common assault, two counts of assault with a weapon, assault causing bodily harm, and a single count of aggravated assault. These charges were in relation to a patient, a differing one than the previous charged, for the period of February 2017 and October 20119.[i]
This is not the first time Stevens has been charged with sexual assault. Stevens was charged in 2018 with sexual assault, assault, choking to overcome resistance, and two counts of uttering threats that occurred between 2012 and 2013. In May of 2021, the Massage Therapists’ Association of Nova Scotia suspended Steven’s license. In June of 2021, Stevens was convicted of all charges except for one of the uttering threat charges. Stevens is to be sentenced on November 26, 2021.
Massage Therapist, Martin Huybers, Convicted of Assault
In 2018, Martin Huybers was charged with ten counts of sexual assault and one count of common assault of nine women. Multiple victims claimed these assaults occurred during massage therapy sessions at Strides Spa and Wellness Centre in Elmsdale, Nova Scotia. The assaults were alleged to have occurred between 2014 and 2017. In July of 2021, Huybers was found not guilty on the sexual assault charges but guilty of the singular charge of assault. Huybers will be sentenced in September of 2021.
Civil Lawsuits against Massage Therapists and their Clinics
It is likely that civil lawsuits will be filed against the massage therapists themselves as well as the clinics they worked in. Generally, in these instances, these types of lawsuits will claim that clinics failed to protect the victims and failed to take steps to remove an individual when they became aware, or ought to have been made aware, that there were allegations that an individual was committing sexual abuse or exploitation. The purpose of these lawsuits is for victims to see monetary compensation for pain and suffering, lost income, valuable services, and the cost of care (e.g. psychological counselling). Wagners has the experience required to help you navigate your historical sexual abuse claim. We understand it may take years or even decades for a victim to come forward.
No Time Limit on Bringing Sexual Assault Claims in Nova Scotia
In 2015, the Nova Scotia Legislature made amendments to the Limitation of Actions Act, SNS 2014, c 35, which removed any time limitation on when a lawsuit must be filed in regard to sexual abuse. This means that historical victims of sexual abuse who are now ready to come forward can initiate lawsuits despite the fact that the abuse happened years or even decades previously.
Your Legal Options After Sexual Abuse or Sexual Assault
At Wagners, we’ve met survivors of sexual abuse and assault who find it extremely difficult to share their experiences even with a lawyer. We have a team that’s professional and compassionate so you can rely on their experience to explain your legal options and provide the assistance you need to fight for your fair compensation. Sexual abuse survivors can trust us to use the information they share to ensure the persons responsible are brought to justice.
Civil lawsuit: In this case, we pursue the case on behalf of the survivor in a civil court. If found at fault, the assailant will be required to pay up monetary compensation, which would allow the survivor to recover from the abuse.
Class action lawsuit: It is also possible to file a class-action lawsuit against an assailant who sexually assaulted several people. The group of survivors can come together to collectively file a class action suit against the person or institution that was responsible for the assault or abuse.
At Wagners, we take time to evaluate the specifics of your case and advise on the best legal option to help you receive the monetary compensation you need to recover from the abuse you endured.
Why pursue a sexual assault and sexual abuse claim?
Enduring sexual abuse or assault is, to say the least, devastating. As much as no amount of compensation can eliminate the pain and suffering that your assailant caused, there is so much good that comes from a successfully resolved sexual assault claim. As a survivor, the monetary compensation you receive can allow you to start rebuilding your life and cater to the medical costs involved. Holding the assailant accountable also restores your dignity and encourages other victims of sexual assault and abuse to come out and seek justice.