Monday, September 22, 2008

Street Harassment Update

From Salon:

Sure, snapping a cellphone picture of a street harasser is good for humiliating the lech -- and alerting other women to his modus perverandi -- on the Web site Holler Back NYC. But, as a story in the New York Times shows, it can serve him with far more than embarrassment.

Last month, a 28-year-old woman was walking up a set of stairs -- wearing a skirt -- at the Dyckman Street station when she noticed a man suspiciously close to her. He just so happened to be fiddling with his cellphone and someone nearby told her that the man had snapped an up-the-skirt shot. The woman told the Times: "I said I had to do something. Since he is taking pictures of me, I am going to take pictures of him." So, she followed him onto a train and readied her cellphone. "And I told him 'smile' because I am going to the police," she said. She took a photo of his mug, e-mailed it to police and filed a criminal report. Bravo!

It's the kind of admirable act hardened city dwellers expect to lead nowhere -- except, thanks to the snapshot, a police officer recognized the suspect in a subway station earlier this week and he was charged Wednesday with attempted sexual abuse, harassment and unlawful surveillance. How's that for bursting your bubble of cosmopolitan cynicism!

See our original post on the topic here.

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