NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Erin Andrews took the stand Monday afternoon in her $75 million civil case against the Nashville Marriott at Vanderbilt University. The sports broadcaster told a jury she believed the hotel allowed a stalker to gain access to her and record nude images. Through tears, Andrews gave vivid details of the pain she experienced after the video was posted online.
“My naked body was on the front page of the New York Post. They had put bars over my body parts,” Andrews said. “My girlfriend was calling me, telling me she was running around New York City, throwing coffee on all the papers because she felt so bad. It’s just crazy.”
Andrews said media reports claimed the video was a publicity stunt to get more fans. Meanwhile, she said she fell into depression and panic as she feared the worst from a stalker.
Andrews’ attorney, Randall Kinnard, tried to convince the jury that the aftermath of the peephole video being posted online has caused so much emotional damage that Andrews may never be the same person again. Attorneys for the hotel argued the hotel should not be held accountable for the actions of a dedicated stalker who made a complicated plan to deceive hotel employees and get into a room next to Andrews’ room.
Andrews’ convicted stalker, Michael David Barrett, testified through a taped deposition on Monday. Andrews left the courtroom before the deposition was played.
In the deposition, taped late last year, Barrett said he went to hotel restaurant and used the house phone to call the operator and asked for Andrews’ room. The operator connected him, and her room number appeared on a phone screen. Barrett said he went up to her floor and saw the room next to hers was being cleaned. He then went to front desk and asked for that room.
He said his initial intent was to shoot the video to make money. He told attorneys that he later regretted his decision.
Barrett is now working at a meat packing business in Portland.
Andrews said she and her family couldn’t say anything about the FBI investigation because they didn’t want to scare or tip off Barrett. She turned the video over to the FBI, which she described as turning her body over.
Andrews said she became sick when her father told her she would have to watch the video with the FBI. It wasn’t until after she got sick that agents believed she didn’t orchestrate the video.
“I said, ‘Dad, I’m going to puke,’” Andrews said. “I went and threw up. They believed me. I threw up.”
Andrews and her family were initially confused about where the video was recorded. She said her stylist noticed her jeans were from a Vanderbilt football game.
The court also heard from Andrews’ mother on Monday.
Last week, Andrews’ father took the stand, even choking up as he talked about his concern for his daughter’s safety and the toll this incident has taken on their family.