A woman said she was sexually assaulted while flying to Detroit.
The 22-year-old woman said she was sleeping on a Spirit Airlines flight. When she woke up, she allegedly found Prabhu Ramamoorthy’s hand in her pants, reported The Detroit News.
The woman alerted a flight attendant and Ramamoorthy, an Indian citizen who is on a travel visa, was taken into custody at Wayne County Airport Authority.
Ramamoorthy at first said he was sleeping as well and didn’t do anything, but he later said he “might have” undone her bra and touched her, according to the complaint (pdf). His wife was sitting on the other side of him during the flight.
Federal prosecutor Amand Jawad noted that Ramamoorthy is not a U.S. citizen.
“He is a citizen of India, and because of that, he can request that the government notify his county so India’s counselor offices here in the United States, and those offices may be able to help him obtain legal representation or be in his contact with this family (so they may) visit him in detention,” Jawad told CBS.
This report is terrifying. But so is this stat: 1 out of 5 flight attendants said they had dealt with complaints of sexual assault made by passengers, according to a survey done by the Association of Flight Attendants union https://t.co/OFNw4zw094
— sara ashley o'brien (@saraashleyo) January 5, 2018
Jawad told the Washington Post that Ramamoorthy’s wife is either complicit or ignorant of what happened.
“What makes this offense particularly egregious and the defendant even more of a danger to the community is the fact that it took place on an airplane. He was brazen enough to do this basically in public, next to his wife where anyone could have seen him,” Jawad said.
The news comes after CNN published an investigation, citing FBI figures, that midair sexual assault jumped by 66 percent from fiscal year 2014 to fiscal year 2017.
Several women shared their stories of being assaulted.
Allison Dvaladze told CNN she fell asleep a Delta Airlines flight and was woken up by the man next to her “grabbing her.”
“I slapped his hand right away, yelled ‘no,’ without even thinking,” Dvaladze said.
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