Fairview police say robbery, assault at hotel was a setup

John Joyce
  • Fairview Twp. police say a Harrisburg woman set up a couple to be robbed and beaten at an area hotel.
  • One of the victims was found covered in blood and with his face severely beaten, according to charging documents.

Police officers responding to a report of a robbery assault at the Scottish Inn in Fairview Township on Saturday found a man covered in blood and a woman who said she had been locked in the bathroom, according to charging documents.

Investigators believe a woman identified as Julia Grimes, 38, of Harrisburg, is responsible for setting the victims up to be robbed, the documents said.

According to the documents, the victims are Sonny Banks and Lorainne Mendoza. Banks, whose white T-shirt was covered in blood and whose left eye was nearly swollen shut when Fairview Township Police officers found him, said he and Mendoza had been spending the last few days with Grimes and another woman known only as Lauren, the documents said.

On Saturday, Banks and Mendoza went out to eat, leaving Grimes and Lauren behind at their hotel room at the Scottish Inn, 300 Commerce Drive, the documents said. While out, Mendoza got a call from Grimes saying Lauren was having a medical emergency and she needed to go to the hospital. When Mendoza and Banks returned to their hotel room, they found Grimes and Lauren were not alone, the documents said.

According to the documents, a few seconds after Banks and Mendoza came into the room, several men came in behind them while a few more came out of the bathroom. Mendoza told police she was forced into the bathroom, where Lauren was being held, and Banks was told he was being robbed. While in the bathroom, Lauren told Mendoza that Grimes had set them up, the documents said.

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Among the items stolen were two cellphones belonging to Mendoza totaling $160 in value, according to the documents.

When the robbers left the hotel room, they ordered Lauren into the car with them, the documents said. Mendoza told police Lauren complied, but she did not look like she was going of her own free will.

As Grimes left, she turned to Banks and said, "That's what you get," the documents said.

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Charges filed against Grimes include conspiracy to commit robbery inflicting serious bodily injury, conspiracy to commit aggravated assault, conspiracy to commit theft and receiving stolen property. She is not yet in custody.

— Reach John Joyce at jjoyce2@yorkdispatch.comor on Twitter at @JohnJoyceYD.