New York White couple who attacked Black hotel worker and repeatedly called her 'old monkey' arrested

New York White couple who attacked Black hotel worker and repeatedly called her 'old monkey' arrested
Crystal Caldwell (NBC)

BROOKLYN, NEW YORK: A White couple, who allegedly attacked a Black hotel worker in Connecticut and called her a "monkey", was arrested on Monday, July 13 after the incident was caught on surveillance video. The couple, identified as 39-year-old Philip Sarner and 29-year-old Emily Orbay, of Long Island, was taken into police custody in Brooklyn, New York by NYPD and US Marshals Service. 

The incident reportedly occurred on June 26 at the Quality Inn in Mystic, Connecticut where they allegedly attacked a 59-year-old hotel worker Crystal Caldwell of Groton, Connecticut. Sarner will be charged with second-degree assault and third-degree assault, while Orbay will be charged with two counts of third-degree assault, according to police. The pair also face a charge of intimidation based on bigotry and bias, NBC Connecticut reported.

Caldwell has accused the couple of allegedly calling her a "monkey" throughout the attack. The hotel worker, in a statement to The Day, said that the onslaught occurred after a man called the front desk at around 11 AM to complain that his hot water was not working. Caldwell said that she told the man that she could either send a repairman to their room or move them to another room. The man, according to Caldwell, became angry and swore at her, saying that he was going to send his girlfriend to the lobby to "kick her ass." The 59-year-old recounted that she hung up on the man, however, minutes later, he showed up at the front desk. 

Caldwell added that she told the hotel's general manager and executive housekeeper about the incident and then they spoke to the man while he continued to threaten Caldwell. The hotel worker added that when she responded to him, he ran at her and attempted to hit her. She said that she attempted to fight back but was punched in the head repeatedly and sustained a concussion, swollen face, and an injured eye. She also claimed that while the man was hitting her, he called her an "old monkey."

The 59-year-old claimed that when the police arrived, they told her to wait in the employee lounge and not to leave the room while they reviewed surveillance footage. She then went out in the hallway to get some ice for her face because she did not know when the ambulance was coming, that is when she encountered the man's girlfriend in the hallway, who reportedly shouted at her for scratching him and the pair ganged up on Caldwell, pushing her against the wall, kicking her in the back and injuring her ribs, the hotel worker claimed.

Caldwell also claimed that during the second attack, the couple called her a "monkey" again, and added: "Black Lives Matter? Your life doesn’t matter, you don’t deserve to live on this earth."

The second attack occurred when police was on site. Caldwell's family has complained that the officers allowed the couple to flee the scene and did not arrest them right away. Caldwell's nephew, Wayne Rawls, told The Day: "There was no arrest. They took them to the hospital, still not arrested. They were allowed to come back to the [hotel] grab their belongings and leave, are you serious? I know if it was me, I’d be under the prison, I’d be underneath this jail still." 

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