Man arrested for choking Austin hotel maid


by JESSICA HOLLOWAY / KVUE News and photojournalist ERIN COKER and

Posted on August 26, 2013 at 6:18 PM

Updated Monday, Aug 26 at 6:20 PM

AUSTIN -- A man has been arrested for strangling a hotel maid until she passed out.

According to an arrest affidavit from the Austin Police Department, Eric Robertson, 19, has been charged with aggravated assault causing serious bodily injury.

Just after 9 a.m. on Aug. 21, a maid was cleaning rooms on the 7th floor of a hotel in the 300 block of East 4th Street. Police say she was inside a room cleaning when Robertson reportedly asked her to open a door to another room. She told him he would have to go to the front desk since she didn't have the authority to open rooms.

The woman told police she thought Robertson had left the room and she went into the bathroom to replace towels. When she came out she saw someone move in the closet. That's when Robertson came out and grabbed the woman from behind.

The woman says she fought him off several times, but Robertson eventually pinned her to the floor and strangled her until she passed out.

The woman woke up about 30 minutes later and went to the elevator where co-workers found her and called 911.

Surveillance video at the hotel showed Robertson running through the hotel stairwell. He was found later at 9:30 p.m. and admitted to police that he was at the hotel in the morning and that he was the man in the surveillance video. He was placed under arrest.

APD says the victim was taken to a local hospital with a fractured orbital bone (eye socket), two-inch laceration on her face, and swelling and abrasions on the side of her face. She was unable to open her left eye.

She positively identified her attacker through a photo lineup, confirming that Robertson was the suspect.

Robertson is currently being held on a $100,000 bond in jail with GPS and a curfew.