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York U pulls instructor from course after TTC sex assault allegations

Last Updated Jan 23, 2020 at 4:59 pm EST

York University says one of its part-time instructors has been temporarily removed from his position at the school while Toronto police look into allegations that he sexually assaulted a female on the subway.

“We are aware of reports regarding an incident on the TTC allegedly involving a part-time instructor at the University,” York University said in a statement. “York is taking steps to investigate the matter and continues to liaise with Toronto Police Service.

“In the interim, the University has made arrangements for the course to continue as scheduled with another instructor and this has been communicated to registered students. We take this report very seriously but cannot comment further on personnel related matters.”

A social media post claimed a man sat beside a female who appeared to be between the ages of 16-18, and placed his jacket and backpack on his lap.

The man then allegedly brushed his hand along the side of the person’s breast.

Toronto police say they became aware of the allegations on Friday after the social media post was brought to their attention, but say no alleged victim has come forward.

Since the post began spreading online, another alleged victim is speaking out.

A 20-year-old woman, who didn’t want to be identified, said she was riding the subway on the Yonge Line on January 3 at around 4 p.m. when a man sat beside her.

“The person squished himself right next to me … which I thought was weird, but then I thought ‘maybe he’s just trying to get comfortable’ (so) I didn’t think much of it,” she told CityNews on Tuesday. “Then I started feeling like something stroking the side of my breast.”

“As I looked to my side I saw that there was two fingers from the person next to me just stroking the side of my breast, and trying to be as hidden as possible.”

The woman says she froze, then curled her body up against the window in an attempt to shield herself.

“I didn’t know what to do,” she added. “I couldn’t say a word, like my tongue was completely tied.”

She says her boyfriend later alerted her to an Instagram post describing a similar incident.

“It was the same exact bag, and the same man,” she contends. “It’s something that happened recently to me, so it’s not a bag, or a face, or a hand that I would ever forget.”