Man Arrested After Woman Allegedly Groped At Melbourne Bar
Police have arrested a 41-year-old man over the alleged sexual assault of a woman at a bar in Melbourne's St Kilda two months ago.
The man presented himself to a police station on Tuesday evening, after the victim, 28-year-old Antonia, came forward to tell her story.
Police said he is expected to be charged on summons with sexual assault.
Antonia, who asked for her surname not to be published, was at The Esplanade Hotel with friends and her boyfriend on February 23. She was allegedly approached by an intoxicated man around 1am.
"He was being quite forward ... I was trying to give off hints I wasn't interested," she told reporters earlier on Tuesday.
"Then my boyfriend walked up and said, 'that's my girlfriend, back off' and he kind of stumbled away. I thought that was it."
The man allegedly approached Antonia a second time when she was at the bar with a girlfriend.
"All of a sudden, I felt a hand up my dress that grabbed me," she said.
"I got really angry and I started screaming, ‘that’s not okay. You can’t just touch someone like that against their will. My body is my body'."
Antonia reported the incident to security, who removed the man from the venue.
She recalled a sense of confusion where "no one knew how to react".
"No one said anything. No one did anything. It was just up to me at this point," she said.
Antonia has called on ID scanners to be mandatory at all bars, to ensure all patrons' names are recorded.
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Antonia, who arrived in Melbourne from America last year, had been sexually abused in the past and said the alleged incident brought up "a lot of trauma".
"I feel like this time I want to do everything I can to bring this person to justice, but also prove to myself that this is something I can grow strong out of," she said.
I just want to send a message that it’s not okay for people to touch you and take advantage of you -- even if it’s something that happens in bars quite frequently, it shouldn’t be.
Earlier on Tuesday, police released CCTV and images of a man they wished to speak to in relation to the incident.
Police said the 41-year-old man, who was arrested after presenting himself to a police station on Tuesday evening, is expected to be charged on summons with sexual assault.
Featured image: Network 10