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Hotels sued for enabling peeping tom
Illinois insurance salesman (creepy!) Michael David Barrett stalked Ms. Andrews as she traveled the country, learning which hotels the reporter was staying in--as well as her room number--from hotel staff. Barrett would then check into the adjacent hotel room and alter Andrews' peephole in order to film her naked and distribute the clips on the internet. He has since been charged, found guilty of interstate stalking, and sentenced to more than two years in jail.
Typically, hotels brandish non-disclosure agreements and front desk employees will refuse to give out names or room numbers of guests. Andrews says she is suing the hotels "for making my most personal moments public." The hotels named in the suit include the florid Marriott Nashville at Vanderbilt University, the Radisson hotel in Milwaukee, and an another unnamed hotel in Columbus, Ohio. Regardless of the success of the case, the hubbub is likely to increase enforcement of privacy policies at such middle-rate hotels.
Until that day, here's a small travel tip for hotel guests: if you don't want people peeking into your room, cover the peephole with a piece of tape,
For further reading, check Robert K. Cole's excellent analysis of this situation.
(Photo: Flickr/Steve Garfield)