“Hey everyone! Look at this pervert masturbating on the Metro”

Earlier today, I was taking the Baltimore Metro from Mondawmin to the Johns Hopkins Hospital. I was sitting alone next to the window. In between stops a guy in sunglasses and a red jacket decided to change seats and sit next to me. I thought this was strange behavior, but I did not do anything. He then put his backpack on his lap to block all the other passengers view of his lap and begin to masturbate. I think he wanted me to look at him, but I just stared out the window. He continued like this for about 10 minutes, started to breathe heavily, and then got off at the next stop.

I was so afraid, that I didn’t say anything. I wish I would have at least switched seats or gotten off the metro, but he was blocking me in and I did not want to look at him, let alone ask him to move. I am a pretty shy person, but looking back I should have had the guts to yell, “Hey everyone! Look at this pervert masturbating on the Metro.” Maybe then he would be ashamed of what he was doing.

– Elizabeth

Location: Metro, Mondawmin, Baltimore, Maryland

Share your street harassment story today and help raise awareness about the problem. Find suggestions for what YOU can do about this human rights issue.

4 Responses to “Hey everyone! Look at this pervert masturbating on the Metro”

  1. Marty Langelan says:

    Hi, Elizabeth —

    What a creep that guy was. I’m so sorry you had to deal with that.

    We’ve actually tested different ways of dealing with this situation, in our ongoing research on harassment.

    The tactic that works best is to stand up at your seat so other people can see you, use a relatively calm voice, point to the man, and identify him publicly as you give him a very clear, direct command: “You — you in the gray jacket — put that penis back in the pants RIGHT NOW.”

    Ask people near you to look at the man, to help you get a good description of him.

    Then ask the people at either end of the subway car to push the subway-assistance call button on the wall.

    You can also ask people to take a picture of him with their cell phones.

    It is amazing how fast the creeps deflate.

    Hope it never happens to you again, but please talk to everyone you know about what do next time — we can stop these creeps once and for all, if we all take the same simple, clear, nonviolent direct action to hold them accountable.

    Our taxes pay for the subway, and we have a right to ride Metro without harassment.

    Marty Langelan

  2. beckieweinheimer says:

    wow, what great suggestions, and I too hope it NEVER happens again!

  3. Clarice says:

    Urg what a sad creep. Im sorry you had to experience this. It’s a shame you were too afraid to say something but I fully understand why you felt that way.

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