A Florida man has been arrested after restaurant video footage shows him grabbing a waitress’ buttocks as she waited on customers.
In now-viral security camera footage from VinnieVanGoGo’s in Savannah, Ga., Ryan Cherwinski, 31 years old and weighing in at around 175 pounds, is seen passing by 21-year-old waitress Emelia Holden as she has her back to him. The footage shows him grabbing her from behind in a quick underhand motion.
Holden wasn’t having it.
She quickly grabbed the back of his shirt, put him in a choke hold and, with a 60-pound weight disadvantage, threw him into a nearby table.
"It felt a lot longer than it was, but watching it I realized how quickly I reacted to it," Holden told Savannah TV station WTOC. "I was like, ‘no, you’re not going anywhere. You’re going to face the consequences.’"
Holden told the station she has received mostly positive responses to the June 30 incident that went viral this week. Some, though, have criticized her for the length of her shorts. Still, she said, she’s happy to be a source of inspiration for women, particularly those facing harassment in the service industry.
"Recently, there’s the whole #metoo movement, and I think that’s really great," she told WTOC. "What I get from this is just how inspiring it is to other women. You have every right to stand up for yourself no matter who it is. No one has the right to put their hands on you. No means no. You have to have consent."
After the incident, Cherwinski, who various media reports say is from Palm Bay in Brevard County, was arrested and charged with sexual battery.
I hope one day every woman has the protective agencies to floor a man who sexually assaults them like #EmeliaHolden.In the ideal world I would say I wish men would just keep their hands to themselves, but ya know, patriarchal bigotry.#MeToo pic.twitter.com/FhOhmxe8Ao— Spasmodic Sylence (@DjSpaSy) July 20, 2018
A waitress tackled a man (father of two and married for eleven years) after he groped her. the man was arrested and charged for sexual battery. Remainer: don’t touch your waitresses or anyone IT’S ILLEGAL and disrespectful. Also, #EmeliaHolden you are my hero ?? pic.twitter.com/vvXA2wvGYm— katherine (@katherine_vanz) July 20, 2018
He went for a booty grab and got slammed into the wall!! YESS #EmeliaHolden standing up for yourself & it getting caught on CCTV so people know that it’s never ok to touch someone inappropriately!!— FOLLY RAE (@follyrae) July 20, 2018
Daniel Figueroa IV can be reached at [email protected] Follow @danuscripts