A teenager bravely stepped in and stopped a man from allegedly pressing his exposed genitals against another female commuter by putting him in a headlock.
The 14-year-old girl saw what was happening on the crowded bus she was travelling on in Guiyang, in Guizhou Province in China, on November 10 and made the decision to intervene.
The incident was captured on CCTV footage inside the route 221 bus, which depicted a man unzipping his trousers before pressing himself against an unsuspecting female commuter.
You can watch the horrifying moment unfold below:
In the footage, the suspect – who has the surname Zhang and police say is in his 30s – can be seen standing behind the woman, before he edges closer to her and reaches inside his trousers.
He then allegedly exposes his penis, which has been blurred out in the footage, and presses it against the back of the female victim. She seems unaware of the sexual harassment until the 14-year-old schoolgirl steps in and calls the man out.
The teenager, wearing a beanie and carrying a rucksack on her back, can be seen in the footage grabbing hold of Zhang and preventing him from leaving the bus as he attempts to get off.
The victim, realising what had happened to her, then joins forces with the girl and both hold onto the suspect as he tries to force his way off the bus.
The struggle goes on for quite a while, with other passengers looking on, until the video ends with the teenage girl putting her right arm around the suspect and placing him in a headlock.
Bus driver Wang Mingjian said he heard the commotion and kept the back doors locked as other passengers helped to subdue the suspect.
Guiyang police arrived to detain Zhang shortly after the sexual assault took place, and the man was given 10 days in jail for harassment.
Although distressing, this incident is just one of many across China. The problem of sexual harassment on public transport has become such an issue, in fact, that two major cities in southern China – Shenzhen and Guangzhou – introduced priority carriages for women on their underground trains in 2017.
Despite these attempts to address the growing problem, many claimed it was not enough, with feminists saying the scheme simply segregated women rather than an attempt to solve the cause of the problem.
Rather than telling men their behaviour is intrinsically wrong, it’s being ingrained in women they need to take responsibility for their safety when doing something as simple as taking a train or bus to work in the morning.
It’s clear the root cause of the problem – men’s behaviour – first needs to be addressed before any real change can be made.
If you have been affected by any of the issues in this article and wish to speak to someone in confidence, contact the Rape Crisis England and Wales helpline on 0808 802 9999 (12-2:30 and 7-9:30). Alternatively you can contact Victim Support on 08 08 16 89 111.
Male Survivors Partnership is available to support adult male survivors of sexual abuse and rape. You can contact the organisation on its website or on its helpline – 0808 800 5005.
A Broadcast Journalism Masters graduate who went on to achieve an NCTJ level 3 Diploma in Journalism, Lucy has done stints at ITV, BBC Inside Out and Key 103. While working as a journalist for UNILAD, Lucy has reported on breaking news stories while also writing features about mental health, cervical screening awareness, and Little Mix (who she is unapologetically obsessed with).