HALF MOON BAY, Calif. - What was supposed to be another luxurious stay at the Ritz-Carlton turned nightmarish for one couple.
Jane and John Doe of Washington State arrived at the "oceanfront luxury" Half Moon Bay resort for the weekend of Nov. 18, 2022, to visit the daughter attending a nearby university for the Thanksgiving holiday and to celebrate Jane's birthday. However, plans were significantly derailed after Jane had a sip of a Ritz-Carlton-branded water bottle that was contaminated with semen.
Jane and John Doe are suing the $800-a-night resort, Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company LLC, and Marriott International, Inc. along with unnamed defendants.
The plaintiffs have not identified themselves in the lawsuit, claiming to avoid harassment, injury, ridicule, and personal embarrassment.
However, it's not only the plaintiffs' identities that are unknown. According to the lawsuit, at least 10 defendants are unidentified because the hotel company allegedly refuses to identify employees present that weekend to the couple and local law enforcement.
The lawsuit alleges the visit began normally, and the couple was properly greeted when they arrived for the stay; nothing amiss. On the night of Nov. 18, the couple realized they were out of water and called the front desk for some more. Moments later, a male employee arrived with at least five bottles and "had no reason" to believe the bottles were "tampered with and defiled."
Jane went to sleep and woke up in the middle of the night and reached for a bottle. According to her, she knew something was wrong and alerted hotel security and management. Jane said the water's taste and texture were off, and she initially thought it was a chemical contamination before she started to suspect it was semen.
Visitors walk past the Ritz Carlton Half Moon Bay hotel in Half Moon Bay, California, December 29, 2016. (Photo via Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images).
This would later be confirmed on Jan. 12, 2023, after a claim adjustor told the couple over the phone that the water was "defiled with semen."
The lawsuit claims "one of the hotel's employees ejaculated his semen into a Ritz-Carlton labeled water bottle, delivered it to Jane and John Doe's room, and Jane Doe then drank the semen-contaminated water before she realized it had been defiled by a criminal deviant and that she had been sexually assaulted."
The couple says that they have asked the resort to turn over the bottle who have allegedly refused to do so. Additionally, they say the San Mateo County Sheriff's Office's investigation has "stalled" because the Ritz-Carlton and Marriott International won't "cooperate" with them in turning over the bottle.
KTVU reached out to the San Mateo County Sheriff's Office and is awaiting comment.
The pair said they want law enforcement to do their own analysis and have DNA samples from the semen to be cross-referenced against sex offender registries and to identify the suspect(s).
They also want Marriott International and Ritz-Carlton's hiring practices to be scrutinized, saying because of their negligence, a "criminal deviant" was able to sexually assault Jane Doe.
"Defendants acted wrongfully, maliciously, intentionally, and negligently," the lawsuit says, accusing the company of refusing to accept responsibility for the incident.
The couple says they have been "loyal customers" to the Marriott company, and have even stayed at this resort in the past with no problems relating to safety, security, or services. They travel frequently for both pleasure and business and often stay at Marriott-branded hotels during their travels.
They've been married for 25 years and say this incident has caused intimacy issues in their marital life, according to the lawsuit.
The couple claim they were given Marriott reward points when they first raised their concerns.
They are seeking damages through a jury trial.
In response to comment to the allegations made against the companies and resort, a hotel spokesperson said "We do not comment on pending litigation."