Karate Instructor Charged with Sex Abuse of Juvenile

Frank Yul Pugarita

Detectives from the Montgomery County Police Department –  Special Victims Investigations Division (SVID) have arrested and charged Frank Yul Pugarita, age 54, of the 8400 block of Mountain Laurel Lane in Gaithersburg, for his inappropriate touching of a 15-year-old female.  The offenses occurred at the Pugarita Karate studio located at 8945 North Westland Drive in Gaithersburg, where Pugarita is an instructor and the juvenile victim was a karate student. Pugarita has owned the karate studio for approximately ten years.

On June 29, 2017, detectives began investigating the report that Pugarita had inappropriate contact with the victim.  The victim stated to investigators that the touching occurred sometime between January of 2017 and June of 2017 during class lessons.

On October 3, detectives obtained an arrest warrant for Pugarita charging him with one count of sex abuse of a minor and one count of fourth-degree sex offense.

On October 9, Pugarita was arrested on the strength of the arrest warrant.  He was transported to the Central Processing Unit and was ordered to be held without bond.

Investigators believe that there may be addition victims of Pugarita.  Detectives are requesting that parents of karate students who may have had contact with Pugarita talk to their children about their interactions with him and contact SVID detectives at 240-773-5400 if they believe their child was victimized.

RLG