AND ANTONIO PLANAS
LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL
A Las Vegas man accused of beating and raping a 65-year-old Strip hotel maid last week kept clothing in his home that may have been bloodied in the attack, police said. According to his Las Vegas police arrest report, David Randell Ferren, 19, kept a bloody jacket, belt and condoms that may have been worn during the assault of a Bally's hotel maid on the morning of Nov. 1.
The condoms were found by detectives in a vodka bottle during a search of Ferren's home in the 5300 block of Kalmia Drive near Twain Avenue, three miles from Bally's, the report said. Police said Ferren contacted detectives Saturday after he saw himself on a surveillance video that police had released to the media. Ferren said "he was the male in the video, but he did not know anything about a sexual assault," the report said.
Police said the white belt and black jacket both matched the clothes Ferren was seen wearing that morning. DNA tests will determine whether the blood on the clothing matches the maid's blood, police said. Ferren told police he had been dancing with girls on the Strip on Halloween night and received a ride home from a friend the next morning. When detectives asked him about the video, which showed him walking toward his home, Ferren asked for a lawyer, the report said.
The report alleges Ferren punched the maid in the face as she was entering a room on the 59th floor of Bally's about 9:30 a.m. Security footage showed Ferren exiting an elevator on that floor shortly before the attack, police said. In the arrest report, police said Ferren forced the maid into the room and raped her. The assault was interrupted after the occupant of the room entered. That woman told detectives she saw a naked man getting dressed as the maid fled the room, the report said. Another maid saw the man using an emergency exit , the report said. The assaulted maid was taken to University Medical Center and treated for injuries to her face and head, the report said. A sexual assault examination indicated a rape had occurred, the report said.
Gary Thompson, spokesman for Caesars Entertainment, the parent company of Bally's, said he could not comment on security measures at the property because Las Vegas police asked him to avoid possibly compromising the investigation. Geoconda Arguello-Kline, president of Culinary Local 226, which represents housekeepers at Bally's, said in a statement that the attack on the housekeeper was a "sobering moment." "We work to ensure guest room attendants and all other members know they do not have to tolerate these kinds of actions and should not be afraid to report them," Arguello-Kline said. "We will support management in its efforts to prevent such attacks from happening by being an additional resource for workers on safety issues."
A co-worker of the Bally's victim, who asked not to be identified, said last week's attack has scared and angered other employees. The co-worker, who has worked at the resort for decades, said the resort has cut security personnel a lot in that time. In the 1990s and early 2000s, the hotel used to provide for a security guard at the employee parking lot. That position has been cut, the co-worker said. Guest towers also lack tight security, the co-worker said, adding that solicitors often take elevators to guest floors and slide their business advertisements under room doors. The number of security guards assigned to walk guest floors to monitor safety also has been scaled back over the years, said the employee, who suggested there should be at least one security guard at guest elevators to check identifications. "If you're a guest, or a visiting guest, they (security guards) should ascertain the person's identity or purpose," the co-worker said. In the aftermath of such a brutal crime, the employee hopes Bally's management will review the property's security measures.
"A hotel is supposed to provide for the security of its guests and their employees," the co-worker said. "As bad as it was (the attack), it's a miracle that it didn't happen to a guest or a small child."
Contact reporter Mike Blasky at firstname.lastname@example.org or 702-383-0283. Contact reporter Antonio Planas at email@example.com or 702-383-4638.