Georgia runner who slapped TV reporter’s bum live on-air is banned from races
A runner who took part in Saturday's Savannah Bridge 10K Run in Georgia has been banned from participating in all future events after he was captured by television cameras slapping the bum of a female news reporter as she broadcasted live.
Reporter Alex Bozarjian was conducting a report for Georgia station WSAV-TV as delighted joggers ran past and gestured at the camera. However, Bozarjian was left visibly shocked and momentarily speechless when one male running - seen wearing sunglasses and a hat - allegedly smacked her behind.
Check out the disgraceful moment in the video:
Now, Savannah Sports Council - who organized the event - has responded to the incident in a series of tweets, revealing that the runner will be banned from future events:
"Yesterday at the Enmarket Savannah Bridge Run a reporter from WSAV was inappropriately touched by a registered participant of the event.
"Our title sponsor, Enmarket and the Savannah Sports Council take this matter extremely seriously and fully condemn this individual’s actions."
"Yesterday afternoon we identified him and shared his information with the reporter and her station."
"We will not tolerate behavior like this at a Savannah Sports Council event. We have made the decision to ban this individual from registering for all Savannah Sports Council owned races."
Following the incident, Bozarjian tweeted her anger at the runner, saying: "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."
Caitlyn Penter, a journalist for North Carolina TV station WLOS, also tweeted out her support for Bozarjian, simply writing: "DO NOT TOUCH REPORTERS. Period."
Robert Wells, director of the Savannah Sports Council who organizes the charity run, ensured the reporter that the organization will identify the runner in question, writing: "Alex, what happened today is 100% unacceptable. You have my assurance we will identify him".
A representative from the Savannah Police Department has also informed NBC News that authorities have spoken with Bozarjian regarding the incident, confirming that they will be supporting her. Department rep Keturah Greene said:
"All I can say is we have made contact with Alexandrea and we are definitely going to be working with her in any capacity on how she’d like to move forward with this incident."
We will have to wait and see what Bozarjian chooses to do moving forward. More on this story as it develops...