Southern Utah Massage Therapist Convicted on Multiple Sexual Abuse Charges2 min read

By Tracie Sullivan

A former Southern Utah massage therapist was convicted last week on felony sex abuse charges after admitting he inappropriately touched several clients.

Tyler Trost Braun, 42, initially faced a total of 16 counts of forcible sexual abuse, all second-degree felonies, and one count of object rape, a first-degree felony. However, in a recent plea deal, all the charges were dismissed but three including one first-degree felony for object rape and two counts of forcible sexual abuse, both second-degree felonies.

Braun was originally charged in October 2023 for touching a client inappropriately. Subsequently, in November of the same year, 10 additional cases were filed against Braun for separate incidents that occurred between April 2022 and August 2023.

While the Iron County Attorney’s Office agreed to drop the additional 13 charges, Braun still had to admit all of the allegations as part of his plea agreement.

“A trial would have put the victims through a lot,” County Attorney Chad Dotson said. “We really try to save them from that experience if we can. And in this case, the victims didn’t have to go through that but the defendant still admitted to his crimes and he was convicted on three felonies, which gave them a sense of justice served.”

The original incident occurred in August of 2022. At that time, the victim reported to police that Braun had engaged in inappropriate touching during a massage session. Following his arrest, several other female clients came forward alleging similar misconduct.

In a recorded conversation arranged by investigators between Braun and one of the accusers, he acknowledged touching her genital area, the affidavit stated.

During the recorded phone call, the victim pressed Braun regarding his actions, to which he responded by admitting and acknowledging what he had done.

“I guess I’m delusional, I think that’s probably why it happened,” Braun said.

Later in the conversation, Braun suggested that the atmosphere created during massages can often lead to blurred boundaries.

“It’s really hard to smell someone to be that close to them and like I said it’s like drifting in and out of consciousness sometimes giving a massage there’s chemistry in the room,” he said.

When asked if he had engaged in similar behavior with other women, Braun admitted to the victim that he had touched women in a sexual manner while working as a massage therapist in Vermont.

Tyler ended the phone call by sharing a passage from his personal journal, recounting a conversation with a former client who had also expressed discomfort with his massage techniques.

He acknowledged to the victim that such incidents should never occur and emphasized that his behavior should not instill fear in women.

After sharing the journal entry, he told the victim it was an “honor to talk with her” and ended the conversation with, “I’m at your mercy.”

Braun first received his massage therapy license in Vermont in 2016. According to the Utah Division of Professional Licensing’s website his Utah license expired on May 31, 2023.

Sentencing for Braun is scheduled for June 8.


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