Bettendorf, IA – An Iowa social worker was arrested for sexual exploitation on Jan. 22, just over a month after she allegedly fondled and kissed a female client she invited to her home, police said.
Aracely Schutters, 45, faces one felony count of sexual exploitation by a counselor/therapist, which is punishable by up to five years in prison, the Quad-City Times reported.
The incident occurred at Schutters’ home at approximately 9 p.m. on Dec. 4, after the licensed social worker texted one of her female clients and invited her overto discuss the client’s problems.
The female victim had been meeting with Schutters at The Compass, a Bettendorf psychotherapy group, for approximately 18 months, but had never met with her counselor outside of the office, court documents said.
According to KWQC, the woman told police that she and Schutters got into a hot tub at Schutters’ home, and that the therapist repeatedly attempted to ply her with alcohol before she “engaged in unwanted kissing and touching of the victim’s inner thigh, breast, and groin,” court documents said.
Schutters then told the woman “something to the effect of ‘this is so wrong. I can’t be your counselor anymore,’” the complaint said.
The woman said she got out of the hot tub and left, but that Schutters soon texted and called her to apologize, the Quad-City Times reported.
The client reported the incident to police two days later, Bettendorf Police Captain Keith Kimball told the Quad-City Times.
Schutters was arrested on Jan. 22 as she was leaving The Compass for the day.
She subsequently admitted to police that she had kissed her client in the hot tub.
According to the Quad-City Times, Schutters’ since-deleted profile on The Compass’ website indicated that she was a “bilingual practitioner with over 15 years of experience in the field of psychiatry.” She was also listed as a licensed master social worker.
Iowa law prohibits sexual contact between a therapists and patients, and includes touching and kissing within the legal definition of “sexual contact,” the Quad-City Times reported.
Schutters posted $5,000 bond at 9:19 a.m. on Jan. 23. She is due back in court on Feb. 2.