John Joseph Boswell pled guilty last month to assaulting a maid in his hotel room on January 19, while visiting D.C. for Donald Trump’s inauguration. Though Boswell makes around $600,000 a month, he is currently free to live as usual and travel while on probation after paying just $50 into a crime victims compensation fund. Fifty dollars is only one fifth of the maximum penalty for his crime.
The Washington Post reports that his unnamed victim is an African immigrant who had entered Boswell’s room at the Mayflower Hotel in January with another hotel worker to clean. While her coworker was in the restroom, Boswell put his hands on her buttocks and said, “This is very nice stuff. I like that!” Boswell, who is married with three children, maintains he was touching her lower back:
She froze and, in shock, apologized to him, according to the police report. “Sorry sir,” she said. “Sorry sir!”
When another maid emerged from the bathroom, Boswell “immediately moved,” the report said. The first maid rushed out of the room, shaking, and told her co-worker that she would have to clean it by herself.
Boswell then approached the second maid and grabbed her shoulder, but she ordered him to sit down. Neither reported the incident, but a coworker told a manager, who then called the police. Unexpectedly, Boswell was arrested and jailed the following day. Since it was coinciding with the inauguration, he happened to be jailed alongside hundreds of protestors. Upon his release, the crowd waiting to greet freed protestors with applause turned on him, throwing fruit and calling him a sex offender.
(Though Boswell getting hit in the face with a rotten orange is a briefly amusing idea, consider that under the direction of Jeff Sessions, authorities are being encouraged to crack down on protesting across the country, and the people with whom Boswell was jailed may be facing up to 75 years in prison.)
Boswell’s guilty plea to misdemeanor sexual abuse is part of a deferred sentencing agreement, which allows him to withdraw it after a period of “good behavior.” Since his plea, he has been free to travel to the Bahamas and will be going on a vacation to the Dominican Republic later this month. Meanwhile, the maid he assaulted felt she had to move after meeting with Boswell’s defense team at her house, because she was so terrified by the encounter. A coworker of the woman told the Post that she has difficulty talking about the assault without crying.