Massage therapist charged with rape uses fake name to get media attention in Atlanta
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - In what may be the most bizarre developments yet into News4 Investigates’ scrutiny of the actions of Tarek Mentouri, the former massage therapist facing charges of rape and kidnapping sought out media attention in Atlanta while using a fake name.
Mentouri was stripped of his massage license and charged with 21 criminal counts, including rape and kidnapping, following a series of News4 Investigates stories that revealed women saying he sexually touched them and himself during job interviews and massages.
Allowed to live in Duluth, Georgia, to care for his ailing mother while he awaits trial, the investigative unit at 11Alive, the NBC affiliate in Atlanta, reported that Mentouri reached out to their tip line using a fake name.
The station reported Mentouri called himself “Issac Men” and said he wanted to help people understand how they could sue robocallers to earn money.
It is unclear if Mentouri knew who would be coming to interview him, as chief investigator Brendan Keefe is widely known as one of the nation’s best local TV investigative reporters.
Keefe, who also shoots and edits his own video, arrived alone at Mentouri’s home for the interview.
Keefe reported that when he began to research “Issac Men” before the interview, he could find no record of anyone with that name living in Georgia.
Keefe described the apartment as cold, set at 58 degrees, with Mentouri using an oven to heat the rooms, wearing a full suit and yellow Homer Simpson slippers.
Keefe reports that Mentouri answered all his questions about how he earns money by catching robocallers violating the Telephone Consumer Product Act.
Keefe said Mentouri never mentioned anything about his criminal charges.
It was only after the interview that Keefe noticed in photos, provided by Mentouri showing him with his checks from robocallers, had his name blurred out.
When Keefe confirmed that Mentouri’s mother owned the apartment, he then began to investigate the name “Mentouri,” and learned of his criminal charges and real name.
Keefe then asked for a follow up interview in which he grills Mentouri about using a fake name and not disclosing that he faces the criminal charges.
Mentouri responded by saying his lawyer told him not to discuss his charges.
“Why, then, would you call a TV station while you’re awaiting trial in another state on multiple felonies?” Keefe asked.
“I just wanted to discuss this wonderful opportunity, share it with you. It’s very newsworthy,” Mentouri said.
This isn’t the first time Mentouri has sought out media attention.
In the midst of News4 Investigates exposure of his actions, Mentouri asked to appear on “Dr. Phil” to prove his innocence and appeared on a two-part episode that revealed he failed a lie detector test.
Years ago, Mentouri also appeared on an episode of the MTV show “Catfish.”
News4 Investigates also exposed that a Duluth, Georgia, women told police that Mentouri wanted to massage her and did not acknowledge that he was facing criminal charges.
The Davidson County District Attorney’s Office then filed a motion to restrict his bond conditions, but a judge ruled he had not violated his bond conditions.
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