Man dressed as woman arrested for allegedly attacking man with mace in Courtyard hotel in Dorchester

A New Jersey man dressed as a woman was arrested after allegedly spraying a man with mace in a Courtyard by Marriott hotel in Dorchester Friday evening, and forcing a partial evacuation of all guests, authorities said.

The victim told Boston police he met Zackery Johnson, 34 of New Jersey, whom he believed was a woman, and went to his hotel room at the Courtyard By Marriott South Boston, located on Boston Street in Dorchester, said David Estrada, a police spokesman.

The man grew uncomfortable when he noticed the hotel bathroom’s door was locked, Estrada said, suspicious there was another person in the room.


As the man tried to leave, another man came out of the bathroom, Estrada said. The victim was startled, and ran out into the hallway.

Johnson then chased the man out of the room, spraying him with mace, according to Estrada.

Police charged Johnson with assault and battery with a dangerous weapon. He is scheduled to be arraigned Monday in Dorchester District Court.

The smell of mace filled the second floor of the hotel after the incident and forced the moving of all guests into the lobby, said Steve MacDonald, a spokesman for the Boston Fire Department.

Patrons in all 133 occupied rooms at the hotel left their rooms as firefighters searched for the source of the odor around 6:30 p.m., said MacDonald said. Guests returned to their rooms after about three hours.

A few hotel guests complained of eye irritation, but none were injured, MacDonald said.

Firefighters’ meters did not detect any hazardous gases in the air.

“We just opened some windows to get some fresh air in there,’’ MacDonald said.

A Courtyard Marriott employee declined to comment Friday night.

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