Another Bike Attack

Photo by be_khe via Flickr
Photo by be_khe via Flickr

Around midnight two weeks ago, I was walking from the Columbia Heights metro to my house when a young man on a bike passed me slowly. He stayed within a block of me for most of the way, then stopped at the end of the block while I walked past him. As I walked up the next hill, he biked by me and grabbed my ass. My response was reflexive – as he biked away up the hill I ran after him and grabbed him by the back of his backpack and pulled him off his bike. He kind of scrambled out of the way and his bike fell to the ground. I picked it up (it was kind of light, thankfully) and threw it into the street, shouting at him all the while. Then I just walked off.

After a block or so the adrenaline wore off and I started to get quite shaky. The strange thing about the interaction was that he never said anything the entire time, just had this blank expression on his face.
I still feel very nervous when people bike by me on the sidewalk. Add that to the nervousness I feel when a man jogs by me (from an incident a few years ago where a guy grabbed my breast as he jogged by me) and it’s not fun. It does wear off, though, and I try not to let the fear rule my life.

Here’s a rough description of the guy:

Younger (20s?), short, with short dark curly hair, Latino, pretty light skin tone, wearing (at the time) a red shirt and dark pants and a dark (navy or black) backpack, smaller white road bike with drop handlebars.

Location: 14th Street & Randolph Street NW

Submitted by Katie

Related post:
Beware of the Bicycle Stalker

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4 Responses

  1. Eames
    | Reply

    Wow, you pwned that jerk! Good for you! I REALLY hope there were some people there to see that and take it as a warning!

  2. Golden Silence
    | Reply

    Awesome job, Katie! I hope that gets through his thick numbskull and he learns to leave women alone!

  3. jeanne
    | Reply

    You’re my hero, Katie! The LAST thing this jerk anticipated was that you’d nail his ass. If I lived in DC, I’d buy you flowers – good job!

  4. Miss B.
    | Reply

    I just had this happen to me for the first time Thursday night. I was walking at 14th & U St. NW when I felt someone grab my ass. I looked up, in a daze, to see a guy pass by me casually on his bike. Before I could even realize what had happened to me, ANOTHER guy passed by me on his bike and did the same thing– And I don’t even think they were together!

    I had the same impulse as you– I was so full of rage that I wanted to chase after them and knock them off their bikes and beat the sh*t out of them. But I honestly think you were lucky that he didn’t attack you when you went after him. I feel like it’s just too risky to do something like that.

    When the cops arrived, they advised me against physically fighting back, saying the last girl that physically fought back with the same situation was severely beaten up by the bike groper.

    Like you, what disturbed me the most was the completely leisurely attitude toward it. Neither one bolted away– They just kept casually riding down the sidewalk.

    Apparently this is becoming a trend. What to do?

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