Yesterday, it was reported radio host Jay-Jay Harvey had posted on social media, saying she'd been indecently assaulted by a taxi driver as she made her way home from a night out. She said he picked her up in Auckland and during the short trip to her home he made inappropriate comments about her body, touched her breasts repeatedly and suggested her ride would be free if she "hooked up" with him. He then tried to follow her into her apartment, she said.
Harvey was shocked and upset by the incident and asked her 107,000 followers "should I do anything about it?" When the Herald contacted Harvey yesterday, she was undecided about what action she should take. She was shaken by what had happened and wasn't sure if it was serious enough to take to police. It was later reported police had contacted her and she planned to make a report when she'd calmed down from the stress of the incident. She also said part of her regretted posting about the incident because she felt under pressure to go to police.
Of course victims should decide and control their path, and they should not be pressured or judged.
Police themselves though urge people to come forward to report incidents of all kinds. They need to know about such incidents. Information is power, and if they don't know about people in the community harming others, they cannot stop them and prevent further victimisations.
When something bad happens to us, it is our responsibility to make sure we do all we can to stop it possibly happening again.
The thought of going to the police and making a complaint may seem daunting, and you may feel that what happened to you isn't "bad enough" or "serious enough" to warrant their time.
The Herald is aware of at least one recent case involving threatening emails.
Many people these days receive nasty messages, but these were threats to personal safety - and they were repetitive. The person who received said emails said her first instinct was to delete them and ignore them, but decided a police complaint was the most appropriate and responsible course of action.
So while still feeling the matter was trivial and that police time was being wasted, she went to police. The officers who took and handled the complaint were clear: it was a genuine case of threatening behaviour and they absolutely wanted to know about it. They cannot do their job - primarily to protect the public - if they are not aware of the dangers. In this case there was not enough evidence to take the complaint further. But the person was satisfied knowing police now had this person on their radar, that if something similar happened, police could deal with it appropriately.
Like every victim, Harvey must make her own decision on what happens next and none of us should judge her either way. She should not feel pressured or bullied into taking her matter to the police. But victims have a right to hold people to account for their actions, and should not be worried about exercising it.