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Business claims it’s victim in political theatre

The exterior of Asian Sunny Massage in downtown La Crosse
The exterior of Asian Sunny Massage in downtown La Crosse
Published: Apr. 30, 2021 at 8:22 PM CDT
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LA CROSSE, Wis. (WEAU) -

Unwanted attention has forced a minority-owned business in La Crosse to delete its social media presence.

In a report story published by Fox News, ‘Asian Sunny Massage’ was accused of posting ads on illicit websites known for soliciting sexual services.

This alone wouldn’t be something that attracts coverage by a national outlet, however, the building on Pearl Street where the massage parlor is located is owned by Democratic Congressman Ron Kind.

In an open records request, La Crosse Police revealed there are no active investigations involving the spa and the past inspections did not uncover illegal activity.

Through it’s attorney, Joe Veenstra, the business issued the following statement:

“Recent news articles and stories have included defamatory implications regarding the operation of Asian Sunny Massage. These stories are a sad attempt to use politics in its worst way and, in doing so, to hurt an Asian-American operated business in the process.

Asian Sunny Massage runs a perfectly legitimate business. It operates in accordance with all state and local regulations. Any statements or implications to the contrary are defamatory and anyone in the press or politics saying otherwise is risking serious legal action.

Again, these stories are political hit pieces hurting an Asian-American run business and the people seeking to benefit from it should be ashamed. In today’s political climate in which Asians and Asian-run businesses have been the subject of bullying, harassment, and mass shootings, targeting an Asian business with these false assertions in a weak attempt to make some political point is really despicable.”

Representative Kind’s office released the following statement on his behalf:

“As a former special prosecutor, I take any allegation of wrongdoing seriously. But that’s not what this is. This is a baseless smear rooted in racism and insinuations. Tawni and I have never received any complaint from the community or police about this small business. Because of Derrick Van Orden and his allies pushing lies, local police are increasing patrols to ensure the safety of this Asian-owned small business. In light of what has happened across the country and especially in Atlanta last month, it is irresponsible, dangerous, and despicable of Derrick Van Orden to slander this local business owner and put law enforcement in harm’s way.”

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