Sexual harassment on Metro trains, buses a problem

People who were sexually harassed riding the train or bus spoke out Wednesday to a special D.C. Council Committee about the incidents on their commute.

Victim Kendra Starr told of a story involving a man with his hands down his pants.

"He was muttering all this stuff, this really gross stuff," she said.

Starr said she didn't report the crime to police, but on Wednesday, she and many others told their stories.

"It was a sunny day and I was groped outside the Farragut Metro station," said Pascal Leone of Germantown. "I don't think anyone man or woman should have to be treated that way."

Hundreds of Metro rider are telling their stories on a website called Collective Action for Safe Spaces. With strength in numbers, they're bringing their stories of sexual harassment to authorities.

Even if police exist, a lot [of victims] are afraid to report it," said Chai Shenoy, the Executive Director of Collective Action. "We want to create an environment of zero tolerance."

Last year, there were 84 cases involving sexual offenses reported to Transit police. Police say there is no increase this year, but talking to Metro riders, it's clear many incidents go unreported.

"Someone will rub up on me and touch me," said rider Kimberly Avery. "There is a problem."

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