Published: Thu, August 02, 2018
Global News | By Blake Casey

French woman slapped after standing up to sexual harasser

French woman slapped after standing up to sexual harasser

Laguerre filed a complaint with police and later shared the video on social media, writing "Because I responded to his harassment, a man hit me in the street, in the middle of the day, in front of dozens of witnesses".

Since the attack, which took place last Tuesday, Laguerre has suffered from headaches and neck pain and has said that she is no longer comfortable in her own neighbourhood of La Villette.

Her post has gone viral, with the video being seen over 10,000 times, and attracting more than 2,000 comments.

Since sharing online CCTV footage of the incident, which has been viewed hundreds of thousands of times, Ms Laguerre has become an icon to feminists, who say that women are regularly subjected to the sort of behaviour she had to confront. She turned back towards the man and gave him another piece of her mind. "This is an unacceptable behavior", she said in the post.

In March, the French government approved immediate fines starting at €90 (S$140) for anyone caught sexually harassing a woman on the street or on public transportation. "But he had heard me and suddenly things happened suddenly. I wasn't going to look down and certainly wasn't going to apologise".

The man is seen walking by a streetside cafe when he picks up an ashtray from a table and throws it over customers' heads in the woman's direction.

In the bill set to be adopted at the end of the week, "annoying, following, threatening a forbidden", she said, adding that offenders would likely start receiving fines in the autumn.

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"He wasn't the first one and I can't accept being humiliated like that, so I replied "shut up"".

"I felt hatred", Marie told Le Parisien.

In response, Ms Laguerre insulted him as the pair came close to each other again. The patrons at the outdoor cafe witnessed the attack and reacted in shock leaping to help but he walked off. They appear to exchange words, and just off-frame, he appears to strike her.

According to the Guardian, the Paris prosecutor's office has opened an inquiry into the incident, but so far the attacker has not been identified. To be fair, very few women report these kinds of incidents so it's hard to know how police would respond to 8,500 reports each day.

'The attacker was unsafe.

Police have launched a hunt to find the attacker while French Equalities Minister said she was "outraged but unfortunately not surprised". I am sick of feeling unsafe walking in the street.

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