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Viewers Watch In Horror As Georgia Reporter Is Sexually Assaulted On-Air During Marathon

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By Ben Robinson III

Social media has become a powerful tool of the new millennium for a multitude of reasons. It captures day to day instances of injustice, and sometimes it captures it during the moment the infraction is taking place. This was what happened during a latest incident of sexual harassment which occurred during a televised event in Savannah, Georgia. And the woman it happened to is not remaining silent. Luckily for her she's found support in the voices of others who were bothered by what they witnessed.

Gettyimages | PeopleImages

During a live televised segment of Savannah's annual Savannah Bridge Run on NBC affiliate WSAV reporter Alex Bozarjian appeared to be somewhat enjoying the frenetic energy of the people running by her with smiles, chuckles and gestures in front of the camera. At one point she finds herself moving just out of the way of the enthusiastic runners, giving them all an opportunity for be on camera. And then, everything changed when a man runs up and smacks her on her rear end, changing the entire mood.

Immediately following the incident people shared their views about what happened, with many horrified at watching Bozarjian get violated on National television. Twitter users were the most bothered, with one person commenting "Every day sexism. This is what happens when we allow men to assault women, and we laugh it off. We have to teach our boys AND our girls that this is wrong" with another user adding "Disgusting display of contempt for a woman doing her job. Apparently he has been found and has subsequently deactivated his social media accounts. I hope the scorn being heaped on him is not the only consequence he suffers for his decisions"

Gettyimages | svetikd

Buzzfeed News reports that the man has been identified as Tommy Callaway, who ironically volunteers with a youth ministry. He may have to put that on hold for a while since he's now possibly facing criminal charges. And director of the Savannah Sports Council Robert Wells is siding with Bozarjian.

"We will not tolerate behavior like this at a Savannah Sports Council event," the council tweeted. "We have made the decision to ban this individual from registering for all Savannah Sports Council owned races."

And as far as Bozarjian is concerned she is speaking up for all women everywhere who have ever been violated by a man.

In an interview with CBS This Morning on Tuesday, Bozarjian said that Callaway had contacted the station and said he didn't mean to hurt her. But the smack "was a heavy impact" that hurt both physically and emotionally, she said. She added she has felt an odd sense of guilt, as if she had done something wrong. That feeling has been made worse by misogynist harassment she's now experiencing online from people saying she should just get over it, she said. "Maybe 10 years ago that was a more common thing in culture, but it’s not okay now," she said. "It’s not okay to help yourself to a woman’s body just because you feel like it."

The main takeaway here is that people need to just keep their hands to themselves.

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