An Airbnb hostess who mistakenly believed a model staying in her rented room was a sex worker punched the guest in the face and smashed her car while shouting “I know what you are.”
Lyndsey McCabe, 46, was ordered to pay £500 damages to Jane Dillon after convincing herself that the actress who booked for the night would be selling sexual services from the room.
During the attack, McCabe, a therapist, punched Miss Dillon on the hands and arms before kicking her in the legs and causing her suitcase to tumble down a flight of stairs and burst open.
She told the victim, “Get out of my house. Pack your things and get it all out of my house. I know what you are, you’re a sex worker.’
When Miss Dillon ran to her Nissan Juke car for safety, McCabe smashed the windshield with a rock before facing her in a “fighting stance.”
Lyndsey McCabe, 46, (pictured) was ordered to pay £500 damages to Jane Dillon after she convinced herself that the actress and model who had booked into her Airbnb for the night were selling sexual services from the room
McCabe, whose property is pictured, punched the dude in the face and smashed her car as she yelled, “I know what you are.”
Police called to the scene arrested McCabe, who practices holistic therapies including reflexology, aromatherapy and massages on her property in Dodleston, a village near Chester.
Miss Dillon, who runs a party planning business, suffered minor physical injuries during the ordeal, including visible redness and a scratch on her hand. She told police she found the “entire incident traumatizing.”
At Chester Magistrates’ Court, McCabe admitted to assault and criminal damage and was also ordered to serve 12 months community service with 20 days of rehabilitation activity and 150 hours of unpaid work. She was ordered to pay Miss Dillon £335 damages for the damage caused and a further £165 for ‘psychological and physical distress’.
The incident occurred at 9pm on January 28 this year after Miss Dillan booked McCabe’s guest room for the night after seeing it on the online vacation rental platform.
Alan Currums, Prosecutor, said: ‘The Prosecutor says that when she initially arrived at the address she had no problems with the Defendant. The suspect showed her the room and they also had a chat in the kitchen.
“The complainant asked about the lack of Wi-Fi and there was a discussion about whether Airbnb would consider a refund related to the Wi-Fi issue. The defendant then asked what she did for a living, she said she owned a party business, and acted and modeled.
She believes the defendant may have misinterpreted her into thinking she may have been a sex worker. After this, the complainant took a glass and went to the room where she was watching videos on the Internet.
She asked the defendant for a heater for the room, to which the defendant replied, “You may borrow my heater,” and a short time later the heater was delivered and the defendant went away.
During the attack, McCabe, a therapist, punched Miss Dillon on the hands and arms before kicking her in the legs
She told the victim, “Get out of my house. Pack your things and get it all out of my house. I know what you are, you’re a sex worker’
“Then Miss Dillon heard the front door slam. At first, however, she thought nothing of it, the defendant entered her room and asked what she was doing there. The complainant said, “What?” but the defendant repeated himself and shouted aggressively.
‘Defendant hit the complainant about three times on the hands while the complainant held her phone in her hand. The suspect started yelling, “Get out of my house. Pack your things and get it all out of my house. I know what you are, you are a sex worker.
“The complainant packed her suitcase and called 999 and asked the police to be present. The suspect repeatedly hit her on the arms and kicked her in the legs. The prosecutor is not sure what happened to the suitcase, but it ended up at the bottom of the stairs.
She started to tidy up her things.
“The defendant yelled at the complainant, accusing her of being a sex worker and saying, ‘You don’t know who you’re dealing with.’
“The prosecutor kept trying to pack her things and tried to leave, but the defendant kept coming back to the room and preventing her.
“At that point, the complainant had to push back in self-defense and say, ‘I don’t want to fight you. I do not want to hurt you.’
The incident occurred at 9:00 p.m. on January 28 after Miss Dillan booked McCabe’s guest room for the night
The suspect tried to grab the complainant by the hair and grabbed her sweater. However, the complainant slipped out of the sweater and was able to get outside the front of the address. The defendant followed her and when the prosecutor got to the car, the defendant picked up a large rock and threw it, shattering the windshield.
Miss Dillon decided to get out of the car, but the defendant approached her in a “fighting stance.” The police arrived and the defendant was arrested.’
Mr Currums added: ‘The whole incident lasted about 15 minutes. The complainant did not know the defendant. She only got to know her by booking on Airbnb. She shared that she had used Airbnb at home and abroad, but had never experienced this before. She said this made her question her judgment and wonder how something like this could happen.
She said she experienced flashbacks where the door slammed shut, footsteps at the door got louder and the defendant burst into the room and attacked her.
“She said she was away from work for two weeks because of the stress and trauma of it. She is self-employed and runs a party business. She has lost potential income due to the time off.
“The Crown is asking for compensation not only for the injuries, which we accept are minor, but also for the ongoing stress.”
McCabe had previous convictions for sexual assault from 2016 and for a racially aggravated public order case from 2018. Her attorney Selina Woodward said: “I would suggest that the plaintiff suffered no more than minor physical damage.
‘The suspect is an independent therapist. She has taken steps to go to counseling regularly. She realized she had to deal with a past trauma. She realized it was unacceptable behavior. She has caring responsibilities for a friend with a brain injury and she has taken steps to address the offensive behavior. She no longer advertises the property on Airbnb.”