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Ex-massage therapist takes plea in sex trial

Posted at 6:47 PM, Oct 19, 2015
and last updated 2015-10-19 21:47:15-04

A former massage therapist charged with sexually assaulting two female clients put a stop to his own trial by pleading guilty to a lesser charge.

Contact 13 Chief Investigator Darcy Spears first broke the story almost two years ago and has been on the case ever since.  

James Brian Goins was accused of assaulting two women within two weeks in the summer of 2013. 

His trial began and abruptly ended last week. 

Concerned that the jury may convict him and he could spend life in prison, he chose to take what's called an Alford--or "no contest" plea--which means he admits that the state could have proven its case against him.

One of the alleged assaults took place at a Massage Heights franchise in Henderson. 

The other was during an illegal out-call massage he performed in his own apartment. 

Goins' attorney Michael Becker says Nevada has some of the harshest sex assault laws in the country.  His client decided it wasn't worth the risk to let the trial play out. 

He added that Goins maintains his innocence. 

But the state still calls it a win.

"And this isn't just going to be a 'he-said, she-said' and therefore no prosecution," said Chief Deputy District Attorney Bernie Zadrowski. "We saw to it that, given the facts of this case and the difficult nature of proving it, we're still able to get a felony conviction on this.  And that should send a message to massage therapists that you're not going to get away with this kind of action in the future as a result of this case."

Goins will spend six months in jail plus three years of probation. 

He'll have to register as a sex offender during that time. 

He's currently free on bond and scheduled for formal sentencing on January 14.