Home Hotel guest Witness to murder at Courtyard by Marriot in town of Poughkeepsie sues hotel, suspected of ‘severe emotional stress’ – Daily Freeman

Witness to murder at Courtyard by Marriot in town of Poughkeepsie sues hotel, suspected of ‘severe emotional stress’ – Daily Freeman


CITY OF POUGHKEEPSIE, NY – A Suffolk County woman who was with the father of a Marist student when he was fatally shot in the lobby of Courtyard by Marriott on South Road has filed a lawsuit seeking $500 million in compensation to hotel management, the shooting suspect, and a man who was staying at the hotel with the suspect on the day of the shooting.

In a 32-page complaint filed Wednesday, Nov. 16, in Dutchess County State Supreme Court, Tina Martirano claims the hotel engaged in “intentional, negligent, and reckless conduct” that resulted in “distress severe emotional distress, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), hypervigilance, panic disorder, social anxiety disorder, paranoia, insomnia, nightmare disorder, agoraphobia, depression, mental anguish, trauma, including trauma trigger, and other injuries psychological.

On Sunday, October 2, Martirano was staying at the hotel at 2641 South Road, Poughkeepsie, when another hotel guest, Roy A. Johnson, 35, allegedly shot and killed Paul J. Kutz with a semi-automatic pistol 9mm Glock Model 17. . The bullet punctured the right upper lobe of Kutz’s liver, the lower lobes of both lungs, and his aorta, and fractured a rib before exiting his back.

Martirano declined to comment on the lawsuit, but in an emailed statement, his attorney, Jesse Cotter, wrote, “Our firm is committed to holding all parties, including Marriott and its affiliates, accountable for the tragic events. and preventable events that occurred at the Courtyard by Marriott in Poughkeepsie. It is imperative that the industry take the necessary steps and implement reasonable security policies and procedures to make travelers feel safe.

On the day of the murder, during Marist College Family Weekend, Martirano “was caught in the crossfire and witnessed the brutal murder and heartbreaking death of Paul Kutz, an innocent father of three, beloved husband , an accomplished accountant and community leader, while staying with his family at a hotel owned, operated and managed by Marriott,” the lawsuit states.

The lawsuit alleges that Johnson, Devin Taylor, 26, and an ‘unidentified third party’ checked into the hotel between September 30 and October 2, and were never asked to show identification when of recording. The hotel “either relaxed or failed to enforce Marriott’s inadequate security policies and procedures that were in place for guest safety,” the lawsuit says.

After the taping, according to the lawsuit, the unidentified third party left, and Johnson and Taylor made several trips to their first-floor bedroom, bringing “an arsenal of illegally modified firearms, supplies and gun-making equipment.” bombs, ammunition and other suspicious objects”. looking at bags, each time walking past reception and other Marriott staff.”

The lawsuit alleges the hotel company was negligent in that it “knew, or ought to have known, that it was foreseeable” that Johnson and Taylor “could harm hotel guests.”

According to the indictment, Johnson “possessed a loaded 5.56 caliber AR-15 style assault weapon.” The bill attached to Taylor’s indictment states that the AR-15 carried no serial number and was fitted with a “selector, telescoping buttstock, as well as a pistol grip which clearly protruded under the action of the gun”.

Additionally, according to the lawsuit, Johnson and Taylor “showed signs of drug use and acted erratically” after and during the taping. Hotel and company management were informed of their behavior by hotel employees and allegedly “not only failed to enforce their inadequate security policies, but also neglected to alert security or contact the police”.

Martirano and Kutz were alarmed by the men’s behavior and attempted to alert hotel staff, according to the lawsuit. A moment later, according to the suit, Johnson “pulled out a gun and began waving it in the air while screaming furiously. Afterwards, everyone in the lobby, including Marriott staff , fled for security reasons, leaving Tina (Martirano) and Paul (Kutz) behind, trapped between the exit of the hotel and the defendant Johnson.

Kutz attempted to calm Johnson, who “pulled the trigger,” releasing “dozens of bullets fired into the air every second, as if fireworks were bursting through the lobby,” the suit reads.

Martirano “sat there, frozen in time, watching Paul’s body react after being pierced by dozens of bullets. Johnson then looked at Tina, who was spattered with Paul’s blood and surrounded by glass from the shattered windows. That’s when his whole life erupted before his eyes,” the suit continues.

According to the lawsuit, Johnson and Taylor “were plotting to blow up the hotel and/or stage a mass shooting.”

Johnson’s actions, according to the suit, were “so outrageous and shocking that they exceed all reasonable bounds of decency tolerated by an ordinary member of society.”

Johnson was indicted by a Dutchess County grand jury for second-degree murder and felony possession of a weapon in a violent crime with a weapon (two counts), all felonies. In a separate indictment, Taylor was charged with three counts of criminal possession of a weapon. Both men are being held without bail at the Dutchess County Jail.

Marriott officials could not immediately be reached for comment.

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