Runner Tommy Callaway slapped WSAV-TV anchor Alex Bozarjian on the behind while Bozarjian was on live television covering the fun-run that Callaway was running in.
You can see it for yourself:
The man accused of slapping @wsavalexb's backside while she was on the air is telling his side of the story.-- CBS This Morning (@CBSThisMorning) December 11, 2019
In an interview with @InsideEdition, 43-year-old Tommy Callaway says he went to wave to the camera and got caught up in the moment. pic.twitter.com/8zQsnZ7HWs
This includes an interview with Callaway, where he says he was trying to wave at the camera and got "caught up in the moment."
What would you do if Callaway was your employee and now the whole world knows what he's done? You'd have to think through the situation and decide what to do. First thing first, you have actual video of the incident, which you often don't have in a sexual harassment investigation.
Callawy's explanation doesn't match the video. Bozarjian's behind was nowhere near where you would put your hands if you wanted to wave at the camera. If he accidentally smacked her in the head, I would buy that as an explanation. Maybe. I don't buy it.
If he had seen her reaction, he would have been embarrassed, he tells CBS Inside Edition.
In other words, it's not his action that caused the problem; it was her reaction.
All those other runners didn't accidentally slap the reporter on her behind. It wasn't an accidental move, and even if it was, it was not acceptable behavior.
And for people who are concerned, this man, who is a (according to his lawyer, in the New York Post) "loving husband and father who is very active in his community" and local church, was insisting he was "working with those involved to correct the situation."
The only person who wasn't worried about his future was Callaway himself. Again, if you're going to do something stupid, best not to do it on live television. Best not to do it at all, of course, but he had no concern for his job and family in the moment.
I'm not a fan of destroying people's lives over one incident. I do believe people can change. I'm not a fan of men who think it's OK to slap a strange woman on the behind being youth leaders. I would not send my children back to such a youth group until he was removed.
Would I recommend firing him from his job? If he was in a different profession that didn't involve children or vulnerable populations, no. But, would I be keeping a close eye on him? Yes. Would I ask the women at the office if they've experienced any inappropriate behavior? Also, yes.
Is it tragic that he made such a stupid decision? Yes. But that's the sad part. The sad part isn't the predictable consequences of his actions. Remember, the victim never causes the drama. He brought that on himself.