In June, a group of women complained that a person who identified as female exposed their penis at the Wi Spa in Los Angeles. The incident led to months of sometimes violent protests, with media outlets declaring it an example of bias against the transgendered, or even that it didn’t happen. Slate said it was a “transphobic hoax.”
But on Monday, charges of indecent exposure were discreetly filed against a serial sex offender for the Wi Spa incident, following an investigation by the Los Angeles Police Department.
Sources with knowledge of the case but not authorized to speak publicly say four women and a minor girl came forward to allege that Darren Agee Merager was partially erect in the women’s section of Wi Spa. Besides being a suspect in this case, Merager is facing multiple felony charges of indecent exposure over a separate incident in Los Angeles.
Merager, who spoke exclusively to The Post, denies the allegations and says that he is actually the victim of transphobic harassment.
On June 23, several women confronted staff at the Wi Spa in Los Angeles’ Koreatown over accusations that a person exposed male genitalia in the women’s section. Video of the interaction was posted the following day on Instagram by a woman using the name “Cubana Angel.”
“It’s okay for a man to go into the women’s section, show his penis around the other women, young little girls — underage — in your spa?” she asked the staff. “He’s a man! He is a man!” The three-and-a-half-minute video was reposted across social media and promptly went viral.
“Cubana Angel” spoke at a press conference on July 7 in Pasadena next to her attorney. “As I was walking, I noticed something that was really disturbing, something that caused me to feel that I was transported into the men’s locker room,” the woman said.
She said some women and girls were uncomfortable and began putting their robes back on. She complained to staff, where the video was recorded, but they legally could not do anything because of California law. “We as women have rights to be safe in public spaces and they are being violated by men,” she said.
Both “Cubana Angel” and her attorney, Marc Little, declined to comment for the story.
The video was followed by weeks of sometimes violent face-offs between right-wing and Evangelical Christian protesters at the Wi Spa, and Antifa and far-left counter-protesters. On July 3, after police formed a line to separate the two groups, 40 people were arrested.