Women confronted by UTA employee for using the bathroom in pairs, called 'porn stars'
UPDATE: (July 20, 4:45 p.m.) -- UTA announced it has concluded its investigation into the encounter between its employee and a group of passengers that took place Tuesday.
"UTA deeply regrets the incident and expects its employees to always behave professionally and respectfully. Interim Executive Director Steve Meyer has spoken personally to some of the individuals affected, apologizing on behalf of the agency for the egregious and regrettable behavior they experienced," UTA stated in a news release.
The employee, who was put on leave, has been officially terminated, UTA reported.
(KUTV) — Four women returning from a concert in Ogden on Tuesday night found themselves in the middle of a bizarre confrontation with a Utah Transit Authority employee.
The women say they went to the bathroom in groups two times. The first time, two of the women were in the restroom when someone began violently knocking on the door.
“Immediately after (entering the bathroom) we hear a shake and banging on the door, we kind of got spooked because it was kind of a violent shake, we thought it was just another person on the train” said Camille Hoerner.
Hoerner said her friend was so frightened by the racket that she didn’t use the restroom.
After the women returned to their seats, they decided to try one more time — and again, as a group — in part for protection, in part to share feminine hygiene products, they explained.
After they exited, they were confronted by a UTA employee.
“If I see any one of your friends in the group go to the bathroom together, you're getting off on the next stop," the man says in a video posted to Facebook by one of the women. "This isn't PornHub, this is the UTA."
“We were all like, 'What did he just say to us?'” Hoerner said.
“Not to be to blunt,” said Lexi, who asked not to be identified by her last name, “he thinks we are having sex in the bathroom and filming it in the bathroom, that's what he thinks."
One of the women taped the encounter with the employee on her phone. On the video, the woman can be heard telling the employee that the women needed to share hygiene products.
He responds, “Why does it take all three of them 10 minutes? Were you putting them in each other?"
“It just kind of made me feel uncomfortable,” Hoerner said, “and also embarrassed because there was other people on the train who heard it."
As the women protested, the man, who identified himself as only Jeremy, told the woman they needed to get off the train.
The employee has been placed on leave pending an investigation, said UTA spokesperson Carl Arky.
Arky said it is possible the man could lose his job.
“Of course, we were aghast — everybody who saw it was appalled by what happened,” Arky said.
As for the women, they say it is disturbing that the employee would instantly think sexual thoughts about them.
“You have to respect women and not make assumptions and not degrade them and not sexualize them,” said Alyssa Childs, one of the women in the group.