New York City Councilwoman Gets 'Very Creepy' On-Camera Kiss

Inna Vernikov was mid-interview when man kissed her without consent
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 21, 2023 12:30 AM CDT

New York City Councilwoman Inna Vernikov had what she later referred to as a "very creepy" moment in the middle of a TV interview Thursday. A CBS New York reporter was talking to Vernikov on Brighton Beach in Brooklyn when a man walking by suddenly kissed the Republican councilwoman on the cheek, NBC News reports. A visibly shocked Vernikov shouted, "What the f---?" as she turned to watch the man continue walking with a big grin on his face, laughing. The New York Police Department said there was no complaint filed about the incident as of Saturday. When Vernikov later shared video of the incident, she was met with a lot of support, the New York Post reports.

"Sadly, this type of unacceptable behavior typically happens to women, even in 2023," Queens Councilwoman Lynn Schulman wrote of what she called the "abhorrent and disgusting" move. Added Bronx Councilwoman Marjorie Velazquez, "This disgusting behavior is unfortunately all too common in the day-to-day lives of women. We can not let sexual assault become a normalized part of our public interactions." And it wasn't just women defending Vernikov: Queens councilman Robert Holden posted, "This isn't funny in the slightest. It's amazing how many creeps are walking the streets!" (A soccer player also got an unsolicited kiss that's raising eyebrows.)

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