A guest at a Ritz-Carlton near San Francisco has filed a lawsuit, alleging she was “sexually assaulted and exploited.” The woman claims a hotel staffer served her a water bottle containing his semen, labeled Ritz-Carlton, during her birthday celebration. This incident has led to a lawsuit filed in federal court.
Where did the incident happen?
In November 2022, a married mother of three, known as Jane Doe in the court papers, reserved a room at the luxurious five-star Ritz-Carlton Half Moon Bay for a “restful and indulgent” birthday weekend with her husband.
What did the woman claim?
Throughout her four-night stay, Doe requested water delivery to her room. In the middle of the night, she sipped from a hotel-branded water bottle and “realized that the taste and texture of the water she had ingested may have been semen,” as per the suit filed earlier this month.
“Doe was mortified, terrified, embarrassed, and humiliated, but shared her suspicion with her husband,” according to the court documents. She subsequently contacted the hotel, which offers rooms for over $800 per night, and informed the local police.
What did the investigation reveal?
The court documents state that the Ritz-Carlton sent the water bottle for analysis, which confirmed the presence of semen. Throughout their 25-year marriage, Jane Doe and her husband frequently stayed in Marriott-branded hotels, including Ritz-Carlton establishments.
The lawsuit contends that the traumatic experience led her to seek therapy. Jane Doe, a homemaker residing in Washington State, shared these sentiments in her filing.
“To make matters worse, the Ritz-Carlton and Marriott International have refused to provide Jane and John Doe with a copy of the actual lab results for the subject water bottle,” according to the filing.
The lawsuit asserted that Jane Doe suffered from emotional distress, primarily stemming from concerns about the potential ingestion of a sexually transmitted virus.
The lawsuit states that the law enforcement investigation into the contamination of the water bottle has come to a standstill because the hotel has refused to provide the soiled bottle.
This refusal hinders authorities from cross-referencing the DNA in the water with sex offender registries.
Furthermore, the suit alleges that The Ritz-Carlton and Marriott International have declined to reveal the identities of the hotel employees working on the day of the incident, preventing scrutiny of their backgrounds and criminal histories.
The complaint seeks damages for sexual battery and negligence and requests a jury trial to resolve the case.
Despite the ongoing investigation, The Ritz-Carlton has not cooperated with authorities, according to the lawsuit. They have declined to share the lab results from the water bottle and have not provided information about the staff on duty during Jane Doe’s stay.
In response, the lawsuit claims that the hotel offered Doe and her husband a few Marriott rewards points, which could only be used for another stay at a Ritz-Carlton property.
Terrence Jones, an attorney at the Cameron Jones law firm representing Jane and John Doe, told the New York Post, “One of our client’s main concerns is that this perpetrator is apprehended to prevent further victimization. Thus far, The Ritz-Carlton and Marriott have focused more on concealing information than cooperating, seemingly to protect their reputation rather than their hotel guests.”
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