Simon Strelein, a tattoo artist at King St Tattoo in Newtown, has been accused of upskirting an 18-year-old girl.
The incident took place back in October 2019, when a then 18-year-old girl decided to get her first tattoo during a night out on the King St strip. In an exclusive feature published by Pedestrian, El, the victim of the upskirting delved into the incident that took place.
El details that her and a friend were at the desk of the studio, looking through flash sheets “deciding on the fonts and everything,” she told Pedestrian. El then details that an older lady in the store went up to her and warned her “Don’t get the tattoo from here, that guy with the beard was bending and down taking photos up your skirt.”
The report details that when El was in discussion with the tattooist about her tattoo, another staff member was “egging the guy on to take the photo.”
Over the past few days, a TikTok video of the incident has been making the rounds on the internet. The video took place outside the studio, and saw El demand that Strelein delete the videos. In the video, El asks Strelein why he was taking upskirting photos, to which he replied: “it was pretty funny”.
The video shows El attempting to break Strelein’s phone, to no avail — “It didn’t break, Samsung.” She then went on to flag down a passing police car. After taking statements and her phone as evidence, police charged Strelein with intentionally recording an intimate image without consent.
In the following months, Strelein — who was 40-years-old at the time the incident took place — was sentenced to 200 hours of community service and 18 months’ supervision by a community corrections officer. Despite the conviction, he continued to work at the King St Tattoo.
Strelein has since been fired from working at the studio. In a lengthy statement published to the studio’s Instagram page, King St Tattoo issued an apology.
“We acknowledge and respect the concerns that have been expressed regarding Simon Strelein’s behavior, and are able to announce that he is no longer employed at King St Tattoo,” the statement read. “We do not condone his actions in any way, and we apologise for the distress this has caused.
“In regards to the delayed response on our end, we were not fully aware of the actions made on the night in question. This has all come to light over the last 24 hours and we would like to apologise for not taking actions sooner. We sincerely appreciate the feedback we have been given and ask that respect be given to the other artists who were not aware of the situation.”
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