Owner of Lee’s Summit Martial Arts charged with sodomy of child - KCTV5

Owner of Lee’s Summit Martial Arts charged with sodomy of child under 12

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A view of Lee's Summit Martial Arts, which Rai Gatapia owns. (Nathan Vickers/KCTV) A view of Lee's Summit Martial Arts, which Rai Gatapia owns. (Nathan Vickers/KCTV)
LEE'S SUMMIT, MO (KCTV) -

A man who runs a Lee’s Summit martial arts school and comes into contact with children almost every day has a history of abuse, according to someone in his family.

Rai Gatapia owns Lee's Summit Martial Arts and families who train there know him as “Mr. G.”

However, Gatapia currently faces charges for statutory sodomy with a child under the age of 12.

Charging documents describe an ongoing pattern of abuse, claiming that he molested two children. Documents state that he blamed his actions on his medication. 

A member of his family is accusing Gatapia of physically and sexually abusing her as a child, as well as her siblings, more than 10 years ago. She is now stepping forward as an adult. 

KCTV5 spoke with a friend of that family member. She asked us not to reveal her identity on camera in order to avoid interfering with the investigation.

She said she was a teenager when she suspected her friend may be a victim of violence. She even tried to convince her own parents to take her friend into their home.

"I did not want to go back to her house," she said. "I went home to my parents and said, 'We need to get her our of there.'"

The family members who are stepping forward hope other victims will speak out.

“I want people to be protected, to be safe,” the victim’s friend said. “He owns a business. They're not informed. It's sad and I really hope that people takeaway to love and protect your children more. Make sure nothing ever, ever happens to them.”

According to a Casenet search, Gatapia is currently under house arrest awaiting trial. He has been under house arrest for a month. 

He is not allowed to have contact with anyone under the age of 18, but family members say he is trying to appeal the terms of his bond.

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