LOGAN — A 58-year-old Logan massage therapist is heading to prison for at least 16-years for sexually assaulting six women while giving them massages. Freddy A. Perales showed little emotion as a judge described him as a rapist and serial predator.
Perales was sentenced during a virtual hearing in 1st District Court Thursday afternoon, appearing by web conference from the Cache County Jail. He previously had accepted a plea deal, pleading guilty to three counts of object rape, a first-degree felony; and four counts of forcible sexual abuse, a second-degree felony.
Perales was arrested last June after a woman reported being inappropriately touched, while receiving a massage from him. The defendant had told the woman he was going to perform an “energy massage,” and then sexually assaulted her.
Five more women later contacted Logan City police, reporting they also were sexually assaulted while receiving massages at Perales’ home in Logan. The women described similar incidents of him inappropriately touching them, as he performed “energy cleansing.” He claimed the massages could help the women’s marriages and release pent up energy.
One woman also described how Perales touched her chest while stating he was clearing her lymph nodes of build-ups.
During Thursday’s sentencing, defense attorney Shannon Demler told the court his client was a good man, who truly believed he was healing the victims. He explained that Perales felt sorry about what had happened, and asked for a combination of jail time and probation instead of prison.
Perales expressed remorse and hope for forgiveness. He said he understood how he had hurt the women physically and psychologically. “I wanted to be a healer and it didn’t work out,” he tearfully stated.
Two of the victims shared their stories of how Perales had used their vulnerabilities against them. They asked the court to send him to prison so they and other women could feel safe.
Cache County Deputy Attorney Dane Murray said what made Perales dangerous was how he seemed like a trusted individual, but would then pick moments when he could violate his victims. He asked the court to send the defendant to prison for as long as possible.
Judge Brian Cannell said cases like Perales were difficult matters for the court. He described the defendant’s actions as heinous and disgusting. He expressed hope though that Perales could one day be redeemed and the victims could find healing from their hurt.