A man from South Africa has been banned from a gym for life after he was allegedly caught masturbating near a woman who was doing squats.
Footage shows the man – who has not been named – seated on an exercise mat with a towel over his lap, mere yards away from other gym goers.
He had placed one hand inside his pants, and could be seen moving it around vigorously while looking at a phone in his other hand. He was seated closely to a woman who was using a kettlebell to practice squats.
The footage was taken by a gym goer at a branch of Virgin Active in the university town of Stellenbosch, in South Africa’s Western Cape. It has since been widely shared on social media, causing repulsion and anger.
The shocking footage was shared on social media with the caption: ‘I want this man’s face to go viral. This was at the Virgin Active in Stellenbosch @virginactiveSA. Absolutely abysmal behaviour’.
The Virgin Active Twitter account responded to this with the following tweet, ‘Hi! We agree and action has been taken’.
Virgin Active spokesperson Carla White has since made the following statement to News 24:
Virgin Active is aware of a video circulating on social media and WhatsApp.
Our clubs are shared spaces and we will absolutely not tolerate depraved behaviour. We commenced our investigation as soon as we received the video.
We have identified the member in question and have terminated his membership with immediate effect.
It is unclear at this point whether or not this man will face criminal consequences for his alleged actions.
His ‘disturbing’ and ‘disrespectful’ behaviour has been widely condemned on social media, with people warning how this sort of thing really shouldn’t be treated lightly.
One person tweeted:
That man who decided that masturbating in a gym in Virgin Active was a sexual predator. And the reactions to the video show a massive gap in the way we treat men who commit the crimes and the women who experience them.
People making fun of that Stellenbosch Gym Video is sick. What that guy did to that woman is sexual harassment.
No one has the right to make others feel uncomfortable at the gym, which should provide a safe and supportive environment for everyone.
Well done to Virgin Active for making it clear that this sort of behaviour should never be tolerated.
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