MIAMI BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) - A South Beach resident who, police said, confessed to assaulting a woman in an Ocean Drive hotel room last year, has been accused of sexual harassment by dozens of women, according to a criminal attorney from the suspect’s native country of Lebanon.
A charge of burglary with assault or battery in connection to the November attack at the Hotel Victor could change the fate of 32-year-old Marwan Habib.
The suspect on Friday stood before Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Marisa Tinkler Mendez after he was arrested at his apartment along Washington Avenue.
“Stay away from the Victor Hotel,” the judge told him.
Saturday night, criminal attorney Karim Majbour spoke with 7News about the suspect.
Majbour said sexual assault claims against Habib first emerged in Lebanon back in 2019.
As for the incident in South Beach, Miami Beach Police said, Habib tricked his way into the hotel room of the victim, who was visiting from Kansas City.
According to his arrest report, the suspect met the victim earlier in the night and showed up at her room with a key card to let himself in.
The report further states Habib “saw the defendant at the foot of her bed, jumped on top of her and began to kiss her and touch her.”
Police said the victim eventually got the suspect to leave, then inquired how he managed to have a key card to her room in his possession.
The arrest report states, “She called hotel staff to talk to the front desk hotel management asking how did the defendant got a key to her room. Hotel staff advised the victim that the defendant had her information and even had a woman on the phone pretending to be her so he was given a key thinking it was her granting access.”
Detectives said Habib has confessed to the crime.
But Daniella Morgan, who said she is familiar with the suspect, told 7News it’s part of a pattern.
“He’s been harassing multiple women,” she said.
Morgan said she was Habib’s neighbor at the Octagon Building on Washington Avenue, but she no longer lives there after she endured relentless harassment.
Another woman who spoke with 7News on the phone said she, too, was harassed by Habib.
“Every time he would come in the building, I would be super aware that this guy lives here, so I was scared,” she said.
But the allegations don’t end there. Majbour said women have accused him of unwanted sexual advances, forcible touching and exposing himself.
When asked how many women have come forward, Majbour replied, “More than 100 reached out to me.”
Miami Beach Police pointed to a pattern of predatory behavior.
The arrest report states, “Criminal Investigations Division has received various complaints about different females reporting the defendants odd and concerning behavior. the defendant is known to pursue females in order to have sex or date them even after they advised them to stop doing so on multiple occasions.”
“He is a danger to each woman, like, wherever he is,” said Majbour.
Multiple online articles have been written about him with petitions from women with similar complaints in Lebanon.
Saturday night, Habib remained in jail on an immigration hold.
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