Seattle man accused of stalking massage client

He allegedly appeared naked twice and installed a tracking device on the victim’s Jeep.

  • Sara Jean Green The Seattle Times
  • Friday, November 29, 2019 7:56am
  • Northwest

By Sara Jean Green / The Seattle Times

SEATTLE — After a 47-year-old Seattle man got a massage in May, he was stalked for months by his masseur, who showed up at the victim’s gym and coffee shop, slopped paint on his vehicle and doorstep, twice appeared naked in his front yard, and installed a tracking device on his Jeep, King County prosecutors say.

Christopher Piscatella, 34, allegedly became fixated on the client, who found Piscatella on, an online directory for professional massage therapists offering therapeutic massage, court records say. But a search of the state Department of Health’s website found no record of Piscatella as a licensed massage therapist.

Prosecutors last week charged Piscatella with felony stalking, stalking, second-degree malicious mischief and two counts of indecent exposure, and accuse him of continuing to stalk the victim even after Piscatella was served with an anti-stalking court order last month. Piscatella was arrested in his car Nov. 20, a half-mile from the victim’s previous residence in Seattle’s Green Lake neighborhood; he remains jailed in lieu of $150,000 bail, jail and court records show.

The first three digits of Piscatella’s cellphone number is an area code in Houston, Texas. He does not appear to have a criminal history in Washington.

According to the charges:

After receiving a massage from Piscatella at Piscatella’s Belltown apartment on May 12, the client left and later that day, received a text message from Piscatella asking him out on a date. The client declined.

Weeks later, on June 25, Piscatella joined the client’s gym. In late July, he started showing up at the Starbucks attached to the client’s workplace and initiating conversations with him. After several, seemingly coincidental run-ins, the victim changed his schedule to avoid Piscatella.

On Sept. 3, the victim filed a police report after finding white paint had been poured on the hood of his Jeep, with “War (expletive)” painted on the side. He initially believed someone had mistakenly targeted his vehicle. On Sept. 9, the victim — who was on vacation — was notified by someone that garbage had been heaped on his front lawn and a machete and crowbar had been left next to his doorstep. While the victim was still out of town, he had friends install video-surveillance cameras outside his house.

Later in September, the charges say Piscatella texted the victim, who did not respond. Soon after, on Sept. 22 and 23, plants and letters were delivered to the victim’s door. The handwritten letters, which included sexual imagery and referred to the victim as Piscatella’s lover, were signed “Chris P.,” according to the charges. The victim filed another police report and texted Piscatella, telling him he needed to stop.

The charges accuse Piscatella of pouring paint on the victim’s doorstep on Oct. 12, 14 and 15, and pouring paint on his Jeep on Oct. 13 and 18, even though on the latter date, the victim had parked three blocks from his house.

The victim was granted an anti-stalking protection order and moved into an Airbnb for fear Piscatella would show up at his house while he had his two young sons staying with him. While at the Airbnb on Oct. 19, the victim received a notification on his cellphone that something had activated his home-surveillance cameras. He checked the camera footage in real time and saw Piscatella walking up to his house, naked but for a pair of boots. The victim remotely activated an alarm and Piscatella walked away.

After again filing a police report, the victim told a Seattle police detective that he was so afraid of Piscatella that he sold his house and his Jeep and moved to a new neighborhood.

On Oct. 29, staff at the dealership where the victim sold his Jeep contacted him and reported that they had found a tracking device underneath the vehicle. The victim turned the device over to police and detectives determined the SIM card was registered to Piscatella.

On Nov. 18, the victim found his new car, parked outside his new residence, covered in spray paint. Later that night, he received another notification on his phone that there was activity outside his old address. The camera footage showed Piscatella walk up to the house, wearing a towel around his waist. As he approached the doorstep, he dropped the towel, exposing himself to the camera and shaking his body, the charges say.

Piscatella was arrested in Green Lake two days later. He is to be arraigned Dec. 3.

Talk to us

More in Northwest

Trainer Marcia Henton feeds Lolita the killer whale, also known as Tokitae and Toki, inside her stadium tank at the Miami Seaquarium on Saturday, July 8, 2023, in Miami, Fla. After officials announced plans to move Lolita from the Seaquarium, trainers and veterinarians are now working to prepare her for the move. (Matias J. Ocner/Miami Herald/TNS)
Ashes of orca Tokitae finally home after her death last month in Miami

Her ashes will be scattered in a private ceremony by members of the Lummi Nation.

A Coast Guard cutter searches for a crashed chartered floatplane near Mutiny Bay Monday afternoon in Freeland, Washington on September 5, 2022.  (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Wife of pilot killed in Whidbey Island floatplane crash files lawsuit

This is the lawsuit filed against companies associated with the aircraft’s operations and manufacturing.

NO CAPTION. Logo to accompany news of Seattle.
Seattle City Council OKs law to prosecute for having and using drugs such as fentanyl in public

The council voted to approve the measure by a 6-3 vote on Tuesday, aligning the city’s code with a new state law.

Logo for news use, for stories regarding Washington state government — Olympia, the Legislature and state agencies. No caption necessary. 20220331
WA Supreme Court says state isn’t responsible for 100% of school construction costs

Wahkiakum School District argued the state’s duty to amply fund education extended to capital projects. One justice scolded the state, saying the current system is unfair to small districts.

An EA-18G Growler taxis down the airstrip on Naval Air Station Whidbey Island during the squadron’s welcome home ceremony in August 2017. (Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Scott Wood/U.S. Navy)
Judge orders new Growler jet study on Whidbey Island

The Navy must redo an environmental study on the impact of expanded EA-18G Growler operations.

Scott Giard, Coast Guard spokesperson, addresses the media regarding the search for a crashed chartered floatplane Monday afternoon in Freeland, Washington on August 5, 2022.  (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
NTSB probe of Whidbey floatplane crash points to likely cause, fix

Documents released Friday reveal new details about the deadly floatplane crash that happened a year ago near Whidbey Island.

Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson arrives on April 27, 2023, at the University of Washington's Hans Rosling Center for Population Health in Seattle. Attorney General Ferguson launched an exploratory campaign for governor on Tuesday, May 2, 2023, one day after incumbent Jay Inslee announced he would not run again. (AP Photo/Lindsey Wasson)
State attorney general asks feds to add Everett to Operation Overdrive

Bob Ferguson requested that the federal government include the city to an initiative aimed at identifying and dismantling drug networks.

FILE - Bruce Harrell speaks on Oct. 28, 2021, in Seattle during the second of two debates before the November election for the office of mayor. Harrell, now Seattle's mayor, says the police department's low staffing in its sexual assault unit that has led to a backlog of dozens of stalled cases is "unacceptable." Harrell made his comments following a report by The Seattle Times and KUOW of an internal memo that showed the unit had stopped investigating most new sexual assault cases involving adults this year. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, Pool, File)
Seattle mayor proposes drug measure to align with state law, adding $27M for treatment

Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrell is offering a proposal that would align the city’s code with new state law.

Murphy’s Lala speaks to a crowd at Arlington’s first-ever Pride celebration telling them to “pay them no mind” in response to the Pride protestors on Saturday, June 4, 2022. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
AG’s office presses Arlington for weapons-free zone at Pride event

Event organizers say the precaution is warranted under the terms of a 2021 state law.

U.S. Attorney for Western Washington Nick Brown poses for a photo outside the U.S. Courthouse Tuesday, Oct. 19, 2021, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Ex-US attorney to face state senator in Washington AG race

Nick Brown announced Wednesday he’s running to be Washington’s next attorney general.

FILE - Then-Rep. Dave Reichert, R-Wash., speaks on Nov. 6, 2018, at a Republican party election night gathering in Issaquah, Wash. Reichert filed campaign paperwork with the state Public Disclosure Commission on Friday, June 30, 2023, to run as a Republican candidate. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File)
Former sheriff who nabbed ‘Green River Killer’ to run for Washington governor

Former King County Sheriff and U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert, 72, is running as a Republican candidate.

Debris from the Titan submersible, recovered from the ocean floor near the wreck of the Titanic, is unloaded from the ship Horizon Arctic at the Canadian Coast Guard pier in St. John's, Newfoundland, Wednesday, June 28, 2023. (Paul Daly/The Canadian Press via AP)
Presumed human remains found in wreckage of OceanGate submersible

The U.S. Coast Guard says it has likely recovered human remains from the wreckage of the Titan submersible.