Runner who slapped reporter's bum live on air arrested on sexual battery charge
A man who was filmed spanking a female reporter on the backside during a live broadcast of a community running race has been arrested on a charge of sexual battery.
Thomas Calloway, who is a married youth pastor and Boy Scout leader, has been at the centre of controversy all week as a result of his actions.
The incident occurred as journalist Alex Bozarjian was commentating on the event as dozens of excited runners sped past waving at the camera. In the clip, Calloway can be seen approaching Bozarjian from behind at speed before striking her. Bozarjian, looking understandably alarmed, glares after him before continuing her report.
Check out the footage of the incident here:
Due to the furore that followed the video’s appearance on social media, the situation began to develop rapidly. According to authorities, Bozarjian filed a police report against Calloway on Wednesday, describing the incident as a “smack and grab”. This prompted Calloway to turn himself in to the authorities, before posting a $1,300 bail bond.
In an interview with CBS This Morning, Bozarjian described how angry the incident had made her feel, stating:
“It was extremely vulnerable. I would say that the reason why maybe it caught so much fire is because the emotion is extremely relatable for women all over the world.”
In a later interview with WSAV, Calloway attempted to apologise to Bozarjian, saying:
“Alex, I am sorry. I did not mean to do this. I think you’re a great, great asset to this community and to the local media and to the national media. You’re very talented. You’re an amazing woman from what I’ve gathered, and I apologize.”
If found guilty, Calloway could face either 12 months in jail or a $5,000 fine.