(Trinidad Express) A UNITED States bride and her husband are suing Sandals Resorts for US$30 million, claiming that after they booked their dream wedding at one of its properties in the Bahamas, the woman was molested by the butler assigned to their hotel room.
“This was a guy who came in and was assigned to them as a butler to make it a memorable wedding- and indeed he did, but it is a ghastly memory for them,” the couple’s lawyer, John Nicholas Iannuzzi, told The New York Post.
The bride, Ashley Reid, 32, of Red Bank, New Jersey, said she was asleep in the bedroom of the couple’s suite around 2 a.m. on April 15, 2016, following a welcome party for 70 guests on the eve of their wedding.
Her soon-to-be husband, Jeffrey Pascarella, 32, was in the bathroom.
That’s when the couple’s Sandals-assigned personal valet, Moral Adderley, snuck into the room, according to the Manhattan Supreme Court suit.
“Something was prompting me to wake up, something was wrong,” Reid said in the The Post story. “As I started to wake myself up, I realised his hands were down my pants and I jumped out of bed.
“I screamed. He got up, he ran out of the room. I was just kind of disheveled and disoriented. I couldn’t make sense of what just happened. I was in shock.”
Pascarella rushed out of the bathroom, made sure Reid was okay and then took off after Adderley.
The butler-provided by Sandals as part of an extravagant wedding package that also included a pre-ceremony manicure and signature cocktails-was arrested after the couple gave statements to resort security and the police.
Called her for breakfast next day
Resort officials assured Reid that Adderley had been terminated that evening and his work phone with contacts of clients taken away, The Post reported.
So she was horrified the next morning, when the manhandling manservant called her cell phone to take her breakfast order as if the assault had never occurred, she said in The Post story Tuesday.
Despite the terrifying wedding eve, the couple decided to go ahead with their nuptials.
“We had almost 70 people there. We couldn’t disappoint them,” Reid said.
Indecent assault and refund
A week later, Adderley pleaded guilty to indecent assault-but only after the couple insisted on involving the police over the resort’s objections, Pascarella claimed.
“Throughout the process, the (resort staff) were just very dismissive,” Pascarella said in The Post story. “They didn’t want us to call the police. I think they were just doing everything they could not to escalate this and just move on.”
The resort only offered a refund for the cost of the U$15,000 event-and would have required the pair to sign a nondisclosure agreement if they accepted it, the couple told The Post.
Reid underwent two years of therapy to try to cope with nightmare, they said.
“I was diagnosed with PTSD,” she said in The Post story. “It’s been true personal and emotional torture. I have been going to a therapist since the events happened. I’m just trying to get back to a level of normalcy.”
The Post reported that a Sandals spokeswoman said in a statement, “There is nothing more important than the safety and security of our guests, and we take allegations of criminal assault at our resorts seriously.
“We have worked tirelessly over decades to create a safe and enjoyable environment at our resorts, and our efforts include collaborating with various government and law enforcement resources to ensure we are among the safest resorts operating in the Caribbean.”