This case involves a hotel patron that was assaulted by an intruder that posed as a property repairman. The hotel in question was a franchise location that did not have a policy in place that mandated check-in staff verify the identity of contractors performing maintenance on the property. The intruder entered the lobby with a toolkit and claimed that he was called to repair a sink on the 5th floor. When the intruder arrived upstairs, he saw a woman entering her room and forced himself inside. The intruder physically assaulted the woman and stole money and escaped through an emergency stairwell before hotel security arrived. An expert in hotel security operations was sought to comment on industry-wide hotel franchise security policies.
Question(s) For Expert Witness
- 1. Please describe your experience in hotel franchisees, operations, and safety.
Expert Witness Response E-099869
I have 35 years+ of experience in this area and am very familiar with the duty of a hotel to make sure they have systems in place that ensure patron safety. I can speak to the relationship between corporations and franchises as I started franchise locations at various hotel companies and served as the chief development officer at each. Hotel safety is a part of the overall brand standards, and there is an obligation to make sure that franchisees adhere to those standards. This case is a life safety issue and in my opinion, the corporate office is equally as culpable.