Martial arts instructor accused of sex with underage girl

Martial arts instructor accused of sex with underage girl »Play Video
YAKIMA, Wash. -- A martial arts instructor is accused of raping a student. His studio is closed and people who know him are stunned. The woman says the crimes began more than five years ago, but she just came forward a few days ago.

Police arrested 35-year-old Cristiano Oliveira. They say the jiu-jitsu instructor raped a 14-year-old student more than 100 times. No 14-year-old can legally consent to sex. Oliveira is now facing sex crime charges.

"This situation was a complete shock," said Jerad Deal.

Jerad is the volunteer general manager of Gracie Barra Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. He knows both the alleged victim and the accused.

Jerad says he helped at the studio on 72nd Avenue at the time the alleged sexual assaults would have happened: back in 2008 to 2010.

"I never, ever thought that this could happen," said Jerad. “I was around them the whole time and never suspected anything."

The alleged victim was 14 at the time. She's now 20.

"She was 14 years old, and, to deal with something like that at 14 years old - put yourself in her shoes, are you going to say anything?" said Jerad.

Court papers say Cristiano Oliveira admitted to the assaults when interviewed by police.

"It's kind of hard because you wish you would have known, and maybe you wish you would have saw some signs, but I never saw it," said Jerad.

Now, closed signs are hung on Gracie Barra's doors. It is unclear if it will reopen.

Oliveira made his first appearance in court Thursday. Bail was set at $1 million. If he is able to get out of jail before his trial, he is not allowed to contact the alleged victim.

"I would really like to think that it didn't happen," said Jerad.

A shock for all connected to the martial arts studio.

In the police report, the Gracie Barra facility was not listed as one of the locations of the alleged child rape. The report said there are additional charges against Oliveira under investigation.