Tuesday 27 September 2016

'I’m not proud of this...but the next thing I turned around and hit him' - Woman's reaction to being groped at concert

Fionnuala Jones

Published 28/05/2016 | 07:39

Fionnuala Jones
Fionnuala Jones

I was at the 1975 in the 3Arena this year with a friend. We weren’t drinking because I was in the middle of rehearsals for our college musical. As a result, my tolerance for drunk people was at an all time low.

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This group of lads behind me were absolutely inebriated and seemed hell-bent on hassling everyone around them. If they weren’t smoking, they were ruffling girls’ hair looking for attention.

One member of the group kept forcibly grinding against me - very deliberately - as well as groping me and attempting to put his arm around me.

At one point, he started reaching over me as well trying to take photos of the stage. (I’m 5’5” and he was considerably taller and broader than me so it meant I couldn't see then at all). I smacked his hand out of the way, which annoyed him considerably, so he started putting the camera in my face, trying to take pictures and Snapchat videos of me.

I’m not proud of this, especially because I was attending with someone else, but the next thing I knew I turned around and hit him and started squaring up to him.

His friend apologised for him, but he just laughed. He continued to attempt to take photos of me, touch my head, and grind me. So, I grabbed the phone off him and threatened to throw it into the crowd.

In hindsight, not a good idea because he started getting really aggressive then. I wouldn’t like to think what would have happened had I not given him his phone back. He and his friends moved back after this, and I started talking to a pair of girls next to me, who told me he’d been doing the same thing to them and they didn’t blame my behaviour.

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