‘Good thing your husband is not home:’ Pregnant woman allegedly sexually assaulted during prenatal massage
MESA, Ariz — A pregnant woman says she was sexually assaulted during a prenatal massage in her own home.
Police said 41-year-old David Ryska, a licensed masseuse, now faces two counts of sexual assault.
The victim, who is five months pregnant, was searching online for companies who do prenatal massages. She said she needed a massage to relieve pelvic pain. The company the woman contacted sent Ryska to her Mesa, Arizona home on Nov. 17.
When Ryska arrived, he set up his massage table and equipment. During the massage, police say Ryska said to the victim:”It’s a good thing your husband is not home.” The victim replied that the massage was “for therapy.”
Police said toward the end of the massage, Ryska inappropriately touched the victim two different times. She did not consent to these alleged acts, police said, and she immediately told him to leave. According to the police report, “Ryska packed up his equipment, apologized, said he would not charge her for the massage and quickly left.”
The next day, the victim called Ryska under police supervision. When she confronted him about the sexual acts he had allegedly done, he “apologized and claimed he has never done that before.”
Police said he made comments that “his head went blank and did not know why he did these acts, and did not go there with the intent of doing those acts,” according to the police report.
Ryska further claimed he had never done that to anyone else in his 12 years of providing massages.
In a police interview, Ryska said he knew “what he did was wrong; he knew the victim was probably traumatized and that even he was traumatized.”
Ryska is due back in court Nov. 28. His bail was set at $25,000, and a judge ordered that he not be released until electronic monitoring was installed. He was also ordered to observe a curfew.
Kim Baker owns Phoenix Mobile Massage, and gives in-home massage therapy to clients just like Ryska did.
“It’s very intimate, and she probably was in disbelief that this was actually happening,” said Baker. “She trusted somebody to come into her home and not only care for her, but her unborn child, in her space — and having that being taken advantage of, to me it’s horrifying.”