If you’re going to lie about being sexually assaulted at work, it’s probably a good idea not to Google how to do it before you make the claim.
On February 5, police responded to a call from the Excalibur Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas saying a room was on fire. After they arrived, police learned that a hotel worker, Aviaon Lee, may have been sexually assaulted just before the fire was set, as witnesses said they found her curled up in the hotel hallway bound with duct tape, KVVU reported.
Lee told police she had been cleaning a room when a man sexually assaulted her after taping her eyes shut. She claimed the man wore a ski mask and set the bed on fire after he assaulted her.
Lee gave police her phone as part of their investigation, and police quickly discovered that between January 11 and February 2, Lee had searched the Internet for information regarding rape and workman’s compensation. KVVU reported the searches included: “can you sue hotel job for sexual assault,” “how much can you sue a company for injury” and “how can you tell if someone been raped.”
Police then asked Lee about the searches and she claimed they were about something that had happened to her mother-in-law years earlier. She claimed her mother-in-law had been assaulted while working as a housekeeper. Later, Lee admitted she had lied about being sexually assaulted and that she set the fire to try and profit from her allegations.
KVVU reported that the fire set by Lee resulted in an estimated $594,646 in damage.
“Lee is facing felony and gross misdemeanor charges including: arson, burglary with a deadly weapon, destroying property valued $5,000 or greater, obstructing the extinguishment of a fire, disregard for the safety of persons or property and false report of crime,” the outlet reported. “Lee was released Feb. 20 on mid-level monitoring after bond was posted, according to court records.”
KSNV reported that Lee was arrested on February 19 for allegedly lying about the sexual assault and setting the fire.
Initially, the outlet reported, Lee’s allegations made the assault seem “very personal and well planned,” leading police to suspect the attacker knew Lee and may have been responsible for other assaults.
After Lee confessed to making the whole thing up, police also discovered that Lee “had a history of making worker’s compensation claims while working at the Excalibur, with a dozen reports dating to as far back as 2013,” KSNV reported.
Lee’s allegations and the extent to which she went to fabricate her crimes calls to mind infamous false accuser Tawana Brawley, who went so far as to smear feces on herself, write racial slurs on her body, and hide inside a trash bag in order to claim several powerful white men raped and attacked her. With Brawley, she received national attention thanks to people like Al Sharpton, who used her accusations as a way to enrich themselves and become famous.
In the end, the falsely accused men sued, yet Brawley has only paid a fraction of the money she owes them and Sharpton’s friends paid off his debts.