WOODBRIDGE, Va. (WUSA) -- A 33-year-old motel clerk thought she was helping a motel guest but instead faced an attacker wielding a knife.
Police say the Woodbrdige Econo Lodge clerk received a call just after 10 on Wednesday night. The caller said he was locked out of a second floor room, and needed to get back in.
The woman went out to help. When she got to the stairwell, a masked man with a knife came from behind and forced her into the room she had been called to let someone get into.
Officer Jonathan Perok, Prince William County Police, says, "This is one where it's random to the point she's unconscious. This is probably one of the more severe cases we've had.
When she was regaining consciousness she was being sexually assaulted."
The room she was called to unlock was vacant. Police say that could be how the attacker targeted his victim.
Even more surprising this is the second time a motel employee has been attacked at the Econo Lodge on Gordon Boulevard at Route 1 in Woodbridge.
Just last month a 39-year-old woman cleaning a room was abducted and assaulted in the room she was trying to clean.
She was able to get away. 28-year-old Clarence Olowu has been arrested in that case.
Police say there is no connection, but these two incidents have put the motel's management on edge.
They are increasing surveillance cameras, lighting and have plans for putting up a fence around the perimeter.
Perok said, "The detectives are working. They've been working all night and they're still working right now."
Police are going through surveillance video from the motel and nearby businesses.
Managers say employees are being reminded of safety measures and precautions they can take to prevent this from happening again.
There are usually two people in the front office overnight. That was the case on Wednesday.