After a marathon runner sexually assaulted a reporter by slapping her on the butt as he ran by, people were able to identify him by his runner number using photos from other parts of the race and found that he is both a Pittman Park UMC youth group minister and a Boy Scout leader. Tommy Callaway of Savannah, Georgia quickly took down his social media accounts and got himself a lawyer after he was identified and has said that he wants to “correct the situation.”
WSAV-TV anchor Alex Bozarjian expressed shock and horror after Callaway committed the act of sexual assault while she was reporting on the Savannah Bridge Run 10K. Later Saturday, she posted a tweet directly addressing him, saying that he “violated, objectified, and embarrassed” her.
To the man who smacked my butt on live TV this morning: You violated, objectified, and embarrassed me. No woman should EVER have to put up with this at work or anywhere!! Do better. https://t.co/PRLXkBY5hn— Alex Bozarjian (@wsavalexb) December 7, 2019
Callaway has been permanently banned from participating in the Savannah Bridge Run 10K in the future after Savannah Sports Council Director Robert Wells commented calling the assault “100% unacceptable.” Bozarjian also filed a police report but is leaving it to the police to decide whether to press charges, according to the New York Post.
None at all! It’s very nice to feel supported by others when this stuff happens. Thanks Tonya ❤️— Alex Bozarjian (@wsavalexb) December 7, 2019
“I think what is most important here is he took my power, and I’m trying to take that back,” she said. “I want to take my time with that.”
Tommy Calloway, Twitter already got em. pic.twitter.com/YtkbqQjnpm
— P.J.A (@patrickard09) December 8, 2019
Pedestrians sexually harassing and assaulting female reporters has been a chronic problem across the world, from a reporter being kissed by a man without consent while covering a Kentucky music festival last September to multiple reporters enduring assault during the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
Women are entirely fed up with it.
“I think what is most important here is he took my power, and I’m trying to take that back” — @wsavalexb— Nina Mahaleris (@ninamahaleris) December 10, 2019
Round of applause for Alex Bozarjian, who is out here holding this man accountable for his disgusting act of power and privilege. https://t.co/6uX43QCvsc
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, and more power to Alex Bozarjian💜 https://t.co/0PiYMXdifh— Hanna Sigurdardottir (@hannags81) December 8, 2019
Every day sexism.— Kelly Ladd Bishop (@KellyLaddBishop) December 10, 2019
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. I'm thankful Alex Bozarjian is speaking up. https://t.co/KXTViDWJM5
@SavannahSports @SavPolice charge him. Don’t just ban him from events. Arrest him, book him, and make sure there is a cost for hitting a woman. Call it assault, sexual harassment, or both. But hold him accountable because he clearly has no fear of the consequences.
— Cindy Battles (@CindyBattles) December 7, 2019
And to be clear, this was assault, not just harassment, but I wanted to acknowledge the full misogyny spectrum that women, and especially publicly-facing women, are expected to tolerate as part of their day-to-day work.— Roxann Elliott (@MsRoxannElliott) December 7, 2019
Someone must know who he is.
I’m so sorry this happened. The look on your face and the way everything about you instantly changed is so familiar and awful
If we can see instantly how violating and upsetting this is, how come so many men can’t & think it is still acceptable? pic.twitter.com/DqSTVWzh3d
— Antonia (@Flaminhaystack) December 8, 2019
Callaway’s lawyer made some predictable statements defending him, but they’re not worth repeating. Good men don’t sexually assault random women.