A woman named Genevieve Pascolla was taking a flight from London to Chicago and woke up from a nap just to be greeted with a mortifying sight. The man sitting next to her appeared to be self-pleasuring himself with his body covered by a blanket. She immediately jumped out of her seat and got away from the creeper, but things only got worse from there.
She woke up the woman that was sitting next to her and told the flight attendant what was going on, and the flight attendants actually confirmed that the man was self-pleasuring himself in public. They gave Pascolla and the woman that was sitting next to her new seats and started making jokes about what the man had done. Pascolla described the experience as “being assaulted”.
Pascolla wrote that the flight’s attendants started making jokes about what perfume she was wearing and they were excusing the man saying that he had drunk too much wine. She adds that no one stopped the man and he was allowed to finish what he was doing, even though children were sitting closely by.
One would think that United Airlines would make a point of stopping the man and ensure that Pascolla was OK, especially at a time when we’re having a global dialogue about s*xual assault and harassment. Not to mention that their reputation isn’t exactly sterling after last year’s massive incidents. However, it did not happen.
A “security guard” met her when she got off the plane and just asked her if she wanted an apology from the man. Naturally, she turned it down and she filed a complaint with the airline.
They only apologized to her for, in their words, “uncomfortable situation”, and refused to give her a refund for the flight.
Maddie King, United spokesperson stated that what happened onboard was “inappropriate and offensive” and she added that customer safety was United Airlines’ “top priority”.
It remains unclear if the man was ever arrested, but King said:
“That’s why, in this case, our customers were promptly moved to different seats in a different section of the plane and law enforcement officials were summoned in advance to meet the perpetrator when the plane pulled into the gate,”
According to United, Pascolla was called on the day of the flight for a “wellness check” and they offered her compensation as a goodwill gesture.
Pascolla, however, says that they only approached her after she tweeted about the incident, and that they only gave her a voucher for half the cost of the ticket.
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