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Thank God This Creep Was A Braggart, Too

, , , , , | Legal | March 30, 2022

CONTENT WARNING: Attempted Sexual Assault

 

I was at a restaurant by myself, mostly killing time watching a sports game, when I happened to look up to see a man standing next to a nearby table, slightly hunched over it. It wouldn’t have stood out as anything special to me except the man saw me, got this conspiratory grin, and put his finger up to his mouth as if to shush me before going back to his seat at the table. I had no clue what that was about, so I mostly just forgot about it and went back to my meal. 

I ended up staying to watch the end of the game I’d started and so was there for some time after finishing my meal. It was quite a while later when I was bumped into by someone and so looked over to see what happened. At some point, the man at the other table had been joined by a woman, and that woman had bumped into me as they were getting up to go.

Seeing me looking at them, the man came up to me with a cocky grin on his face and said, in a voice that sounded both as if he was bragging and inviting me into some sort of joke:

Man: “We’re just heading back to my place to relax.

He put an extra emphasis on the word “relax” which made it clear that was not at all what he was intending.

Now, I will fully admit that I’m not the most observant guy out there — far from it — but even I couldn’t fail to miss just how creepy and off this man was behaving. That caused me to pay enough attention to both of them to realize the women looked… off. She seemed a little confused, and she seemed to be having trouble walking as if dizzy. She almost seemed drunk except that when I looked at her glass on the table it appeared to be a soda. I stood up.

Me: “Ma’am, are you feeling okay?”

She looked slightly confused even as she said she was okay, in a voice that also sounded a bit off.

Hearing me listing all these symptoms, I’m sure this all sounds super wrong, but I need to stress that while all the symptoms were there, they were all very underplayed. She seemed very slightly confused, very slightly unstable. Every individual symptom was so minor it would be easy for anyone to dismiss it if they noticed anything at all, and even taken as a whole, I likely would have written it off as her having gotten slightly inebriated if the guy wasn’t still grinning at me as if he was proud of what was happening and otherwise doing everything he could to make me feel something very bad was happening here.

Eventually, even I managed to connect the dots and realize that the man may have just finished slipping something into this women’s drink right when I was looking up. I didn’t witness that, but he seemed to think I had. The only problem was that I still wasn’t sure if that was true. Again, I stress that all the symptoms were minor enough at this time that I couldn’t be certain that they weren’t my own imagination due to her date giving me the creeps. I had no definitive proof anything was actually happening, and I really wasn’t sure if, from a purely legal standpoint, I was allowed to physically intercede given my lack of evidence. Still, I couldn’t just sit by and do nothing given my suspicions.

Me: *To the woman* “Would you like me to give you a ride home?”

Man: *Offended* “No! She’s coming home with me. She’s mine.”

Again, I really wasn’t sure I had a legal basis to do anything, so I just directed my question to the woman.

Me: “Ma’am, you don’t look well. Could I please take you back to your home?”

She didn’t give me a definitive answer, looking unsure what she wanted herself. Meanwhile, the man got increasingly aggressive. I got a distinct vibe that he thought I was trying to steal her away so I could be the one to take advantage of her, as if it never occurred to him that I might just not be okay with a woman being assaulted like that.

This made me more confident that my guess that he had done something was right, but I still wasn’t sure what I legally could do if he just escorted her out of the restaurant without her giving a clear answer that she didn’t want to go with him. Luckily, the man screwed himself over by being too aggressive with me, as this drew attention and eventually the manager, another woman, came over to ask what was wrong.

This is when the man started to look concerned. Before I could give any real answer, the man said:

Man: “Nothing’s wrong. I was just going!”

He high-tailed it out of the restaurant, leaving the woman behind.

After the manager offered to speak somewhere a bit more private, I told her what I suspected. She looked outraged.

Manager: “I’ll make sure to save that man’s credit information and everything else about him that we can, in case the police call. I’ll also have the staff save the rest of the woman’s drink somewhere so it can be tested.”

That had never even occurred to me.

Eventually, I ended up giving the woman a ride back to her apartment, and as time passed, her symptoms grew worse until it was clear that she must have been slipped something. I tried to explain what I thought happened during the drive, but I wasn’t really sure she was retaining it, and she ended up falling asleep, still fully dressed, in her bed at the apartment not long after I got her there.

Not sure what to do after that, I wrote her a very long note explaining everything that had happened, telling her the manager of the restaurant had saved everything in case she needed evidence, and giving my own contact information if she needed to reach out to me. Then, unable to think of anything else I could do, I let myself out, making sure the door was locked as I left. 

I never heard back from the woman. In fact, I never even learned her name. I honestly have no clue whether she pressed charges or what happened to the creep that drugged her. In retrospect, I likely should have called the police immediately and maybe had them take her to a hospital, but I’d been uncertain enough about my suspicions at first to not be sure I should waste the police time on it, and by the time it became evident, I guess I had already committed to driving her home and didn’t reevaluate my options. That was a clear mistake on my part that I regret now.

But worst of all to me is realizing how close I came to missing the signs. If the creep hadn’t been so certain that, just because I was another guy, I’d be okay with his drugging his date that he went and basically tried to brag about it on his way out, I would have never picked up on it. It’s scary how close he came to getting away with it.

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