A woman in California has said she was left fearful and worried for the fate of other shoppers after she was assaulted by a man who grabbed her leg and took a picture up her skirt as she bought family groceries at a local Walmart.
The mother, identified as Rosa, said she had been left deeply affected by the incident. “I can’t sleep, I can’t eat,” she told KABC. “I think about not only my safety but the safety of my children, the safety of so many women who go in that store,” she added.
Rosa also explained that she had been left disappointed by the reaction of staff at the Perris California Walmart who she claimed had ignored her when she cried out for help. “I said help, help, no one did anything, I chased him, as far as I could to the doors, I saw employees, they just parted ways and said they couldn’t help me as I was saying at them to help me,” she explained.
The woman from Mead Valley, a six-mile drive from Perris, said she had been shopping at the Walmart supercenter on Perris Boulevard, Friday night. At 6:30 p.m. an unknown man reportedly came up to her as she was buying food. Rosa thought he was just walking purposefully but he put his hand on her leg and attempted photograph up her skirt with his cellphone camera
“As he turned the corner he had this determined look in his eye, he was coming towards me,” she said. “As soon as I felt it in between my thighs, I quickly reacted and I thought: ‘What is going on here, did you seriously do that?'” Rosa explained.
The shopper attempted to fight the man and he then ran away. It was at this point she started screaming but no one immediately came to help her.
Rosa has filed a report with the Perris station of Riverside County Sheriff’s Department. Reviews of surveillance footage has shown the man getting into a white van, though police say they are still investigating further footage.
Walmart said in a statement to the ABC affiliate that its employees had contacted police and waited with the customer following the incident. “We care deeply about our customers and are frequently reviewing and strengthening our safety and security measures, and protocols. When made aware of this incident, our associates called police and waited with the customer until authorities arrived,” the outlet chain said in a statement.
Walmart did not immediately respond to requests from Newsweek for further comment.