2 weeks ago, I went to my clinic in downtown Raglan and Garreth Williams was hanging around outside, he booked in and asked what kind of massage I did and said he walked a lot and did a lot of horse riding, he really wanted to know whether I massage deep into the buttocks, I said I massaged the top of glute max and med, and he would be draped to his buttock crease and above that would be the area I massaged, he seemed to be a bit stuck on the fact that i wouldn’t massaged lower. He also indicated he got sore hammys and adductors and would need them massaged.
I asked for a contact ph number and address which he didn’t have as he had just moved up from CHCH. He said he would show up for the appointment later in the week.
Earlier that day he had spent some time in the retail shop beside my clinic, I spoke briefly with the shop assistant about him, to get his thoughts of him, she thought he was genuine, a bit lonely and had some Health Problems with which massage would. She did warn me to get the money as he seemed a bit short and she said to get the money before the massage.
Gareth showed up for his appointment later in the week, I saw him walk out of our local hotel, before he came for the massage, he smelt like cigarettes and alcohol. I was able to in our discussion for the massage ask how he was paying, this is when the WINZ letter came up, I said I wasn’t aware that WINZ paid for massage and it was my policy to be paid at the time of the massage, he got angry, spat, swore and went on and on about how I’d be paid 2 weeks later after WINZ got the letter.
Luckily the shop assistant who I had spoken to earlier in the week heard the raised voice and interrupted the situation, gareth calmed down, asked to rebook the following Monday as he had some money coming in from bonus bonds over the weekend. Later that night i saw him really intoxicated at the local hotel, but didn’t have any encounter with him there.
On the Monday he did a no show for his appointment. That day I rang local therapists to warn them about him. A couple had already had calls from him and got the feeling that they wouldn’t want to massage him anyway. Gareth left a couple of messages on my phone apologizing for the no show, I didn’t talk to him.
On the Tuesday our local police constable rung and said that she was warning therapists, pilates instructors, yoga teachers, beauty therapists and health clinics, doctors, physios about Gareth. He had been in the medical centre a lot over the week and they had asked the police to check him out.
The police said he had a history of not paying for massage, or other health related appointments and had been known to fake an epileptic fit during the massage and then grope the therapist. They had been around to visit him and warned him that they knew what he did and they were keeping an eye on him.
Gareth rung the next day and I spoke to him and I said I wasn’t happy to massage him based on the way he acted the week before and that I knew WINZ didn’t cover costs for massage.
I found out later that week he has been ringing clinics in Hamilton to get quotes for WINZ. I have tried to spread the word as much as I can about Gareth. I can’t believe that he is still trying this on after reading all these stories and the police involvement. I hope that therapists play it safe, make sure there’s people around if you do get people like this and encourage everyone to let other therapists and body workers know about him whenever you can