The license of a massage therapist at Renewed Spa on Route 31 in Pennington has been revoked by the New Jersey Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy in a “final order” filed Dec. 22, according to acting Attorney General Andrew J. Bruck.
The massage therapist, 43-year-old Asmar R. Berry of Trenton, will be permanently barred from working as a massage therapist in New Jersey after the board determined that he had violated rules and regulations by having sexual contact with a female client during a massage session in 2018.
Berry had been charged with five criminal counts for allegedly exposing and touching a female client during a massage therapy session, but he was later acquitted of the charges.
Berry’s attorney said the sexual contact was consensual, but he also admitted that Berry had violated his duty as a massage therapist.
After reviewing the facts, the Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy concluded that Berry had violated the board’s sexual misconduct regulations and that consent is not a defense.
Berry’s actions constituted gross negligence, malpractice, incompetence and professional misconduct, the board said. For those reasons, his license has been permanently revoked and he will not be able to reapply. He will also have to pay $9,176.44 to cover attorney’s fees and investigation costs.
Berry’s license had been suspended since November 2018, and the board issued a final order on Dec. 22 that revoked his license, retroactive to Sept. 28.