KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Olathe masseur who was charged with sexual battery in December 2020, prompting additional victims to come forward three months later, pleaded guilty Wednesday in Johnson County District Court.
Kulavudhi Kasemvudhi, 57, was sentenced to three years in jail, but the sentence was suspended. He will serve two years of probation and must register as a sex offender for 15 years.
"I give great credit to these three brave women who came forward and were willing to be out in public and indicate what had happened to them. It takes a very brave person … to talk about something that’s very personal and a lot of trauma associated with it," Johnson County District Attorney Steve Howe told KSHB 41 News in regard to the plea and sentence announcement.
The first victim to come forward on Dec. 1, 2020, after she alleged she was assaulted at Balanced Life Massage and Wellness in Olathe, sent a statement to KSHB 41 News after the sentence was announced.
“Unfortunately, people like Kasemvudhi won’t be stopped until others step up and speak out,” the woman, who is not being identified because she is a sexual assault victim, said. “I’m hopeful that by coming forward I was able to stop this from happening to anyone else.”
After the initial victim came forward and Howe’s office publicized the case in December 2020, two more victims came forward and Kasemvudhi was charged with two additional counts of sexual battery on March 15, 2021.
"We actually had more than three victims, but those other two ladies were comfortable enough in being able to go forward with the prosecution," Howe said.
Sexual battery is a Class A misdemeanor.
"You know, I think a lot of people would ask the question of why he doesn’t go to prison," Howe said. "Unfortunately, these are misdemeanor offenses. And because of prison populations, it’s awful difficult to get individuals incarcerated for these type of offenses, even though they’re horrible offenses. It really violates the trust placed on them by the victims."
Kasemvudhi also must serve 60 days on house arrest prior to beginning probation. He is barred from performing massages or having contact with victims as part of the plea agreement.
"I would also say that for those individuals who are victims of sexual assault, is don’t forget that we have a great organization here in the metro, MOCSA, that can support you, and whether you want to prosecute the case or not, that organization will give you the support for the healing that you need moving forward," Howe said.
For jurisdictions that utilize the Greater Kansas City Crime Stoppers Tips Hotline, anonymous tips can be made by calling 816-474-TIPS (8477), submitting the tip online or through the free mobile app at P3Tips.com.