Waitress Who Tackled Groper Says She's Glad To Empower Women

"You can stand up for yourself," Emelia Holden said.

A Georgia waitress who tackled a customer who grabbed her butt says the now-viral incident had at least one positive outcome:

“I’m glad that other women can see this and know that you can stand up for yourself,” Emelia Holden, 21, told People on Thursday. “It’s nice to know that I have empowered other women.”

Surveillance video from Vinnie Van Go-Go’s in Savannah circulated rapidly on the internet this week, showing a man approaching Holden from behind and touching her butt on June 30. 

Holden spins around, seizes him by the shirt and neck and throws him to the floor.

“I didn’t even realize I took him down the way I did until I saw the video afterward,” she told “Inside Edition,” in the clip above. She said she didn’t know she was capable of such force.

“I looked at him and I said, ’You don’t touch me, motherfucker!’” Holden told People.

Police charged Ryan Cherwinski, 31, with sexual battery after seeing the video, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.

On Facebook Thursday, Holden said she appreciated the kind words from people responding to the video, but appeared to have had enough of the media attention.

What’s done is done, he got what he deserved and I’m just trying to live my life,” she wrote.

While many people applauded Holden’s actions, law enforcement and self-defense experts usually encourage victims to get to a safe place and call the police rather than take matters into their own hands, which can risk further violence.



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