Airman Sues Marriott for Millions After Being Raped in Hotel

JPstock /
JPstock /

When servicemembers look for hotels, they’re often given per diems. There are often only two schools of thought. Either they want the cheapest room possible so they can spend more on partying, or they want something more luxurious so they can be well taken care of. When spending that extra money, they expect that certain things will be done, like being provided with properly locking doors.

For one of the US Air Force’s airmen, that didn’t happen. Now, he wants $160 million for their failures to keep his backside safe.

Staying at an uptown Charlotte, NC Marriott on West Trade Street in April 2022, the unnamed airman went to sleep in his room, blissfully unaware of what was to come. With the self-locking doors to his room malfunctioning and nobody telling him, he awoke to a very unpleasant situation. Jermaine Lamont Peay was raping him as he slept. Per the lawsuit, Peay assaulted him as the victim “’howled in terror and lashed out’ at him before Peay allegedly snatched his phone, wallet, a pair of shorts and a shirt, and ran off.”

No stranger to police, Peay has been in trouble multiple times for violent assault crimes as well as criminal use of an unusual weapon. Currently, he sits in prison after being arrested in January 2023 on the charges of “forced sex offense, larceny, breaking and entering, and first-degree burglary.” Awaiting trial, court records currently don’t show a date for that to begin.

According to figures from local news outlet WSOC-TV, the police have been called to that hotel 85 times in the last three years by guests. Those figures alone make this lawsuit ultimately more believable and shameful for Marriott. While the storied hotel chain has been silent on the suit, this is the kind of information that could destroy its slowly fading reputation.