Ottawa woman attacked at a resort in Tulum

Lexie York underwent 9 hours of surgery, family says, and is unfit to return home

What was meant to be a Mexican vacation with family and friends took a nightmarish turn for Ottawa’s Lexie York.

On her first night at the Grand Bahia Principe resort in Tulum, York was attacked and beaten to the point that she required reconstructive surgery at a hospital in Cancun, according to her brother, Mathew.

The 29-year-old arrived at the resort on Nov. 10 and was supposed to meet her mother the next day, Mathew York told CBC News.

“My mom was coming, so she was alone for one night and only one night,” he said.

According to Mathew, while his sister was having dinner at the resort’s restaurant, she met two couples also staying there.

Lexie York and her brother Mathew in Toronto. Mathew said his sister has not yet been cleared to return to Canada. 

Knocked unconscious

Later, when she was in her room, one of the men came and knocked on her door. He claimed his wife had heard a scream and wanted to know if Lexie was OK, her brother said.

When she said everything was fine, the man pushed his way into the room and began to strangle her and hit her in the face, Mathew York said.

Lexie York was knocked unconscious, but was able to feel her way out of her room to seek help once she regained consciousness, he said.

“She couldn’t see because her eyes were swollen shut,” he said.

She was taken to a hospital in Playa del Carmen, before being transferred to a hospital in Cancun.

“She had nine hours of plastic surgery. She has nerve damage in her face. The swelling is kind of going down now, but at the time it was quite bad,” Mathew said.

His sister is trying to be positive, he said, but she’s clearly shaken up and doesn’t want to be alone. Her mother arrived the next day, and Mathew joined her in Cancun last Tuesday.

Not fit to return home

Lexie York hasn’t yet been able to return home due to her injuries, and her brother said there’s no clear timeline on when she will be able to travel.

“Every time she lifts her head up she gets dizzy,” Mathew said.

A spokesperson from Global Affairs Canada said they are providing consular services to Lexie York and her family and are in contact with local authorities.

“Our thoughts are with the Canadian who sustained injuries in Mexico,” the spokesperson said in an email.

The Grand Bahia Principe resort issued a statement in response to the attack.

“As soon as the hotel was informed of the incident, staff immediately activated our internal security protocol, including providing urgent medical assistance and alerting the local authorities. We wish Ms. York a speedy recovery and hope that the authorities get to the bottom of this incident as soon as possible.”

The Ministerial Police also attended the clinic, which, based on his account; he went to the Bahía Príncipe hotel and proceeded to detain his alleged aggressor ; Ricardo SP, 34 years old, originally from Mexico City. The subject, a driver by trade, was staying at the hotel with his wife.

Source: cbc.ca, meganews.mx,

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