Beds, Herts & Bucks

Hertfordshire hotel guest jailed for staff sex attack

David Murray Image copyright South Beds News Agency
Image caption David Murray threatened the women, who were working a night shift on their own, with a knife

A hotel guest who forced two female workers to strip at knifepoint before subjecting them to a degrading sex attack has been jailed for 16-and-a-half years.

David Murray, 35, was drinking in the south Hertfordshire hotel's bar before taking the women hostage in an office.

Murray, of Leicester, forced them to perform a sex act before raping one and attempting to rape the second.

The jury heard one of the women hit a panic alarm but the battery was dead.

The attack on 17 September 2017 was caught on CCTV and showed the women, who were on a night shift alone, being pulled by their hair.

Judge Jonathan Carroll said the footage was the worst he had seen in his 25-year career.

Image copyright South Beds News Agency
Image caption Judge Jonathan Carroll ordered the public gallery to be cleared due to the graphic nature of the footage

Murray, a builder, attacked the women - both married and in their 20s - after they shut the bar at about 04:30 BST.

He took a large knife from the kitchen before running into the office and holding it against their throats.

He lowered his trousers and ordered them to perform a sex act. He then raped the first woman and tried to rape the second.

The ordeal stopped when the women told Murray their manager would be arriving soon and that there was CCTV.

Murray admitted the attacks..

In an impact statement, one victim said: "I have lost trust in everyone. My relationship with my husband is affected. Even when he comforts me, I push his hand away."

In addition to the 16-and-a-half-year sentence, he received an extended sentence of eight years, meaning he can be recalled to prison at any time during the next 24-and-a-half years.

He will also be on the sex offenders register for life.

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