A city gent in a pin-striped suit and a bowler hat, carrying a walking-stick, has been accused of sexual harassment, after he tipped his hat to a woman in a London street.
Thomas Middleton-Markham, 56, of city stockbroker firm Grabbit and Quickly, had emerged into the street from the St. Paul's underground station, and proceeded to walk the short distance to the London Stock Excahnge in Paternoster Row. He noticed Connie Bande-Wagen, a woman from another company, who he often saw in a morning, and politely tipped his hat to her.
She screamed. A policeman patrolling nearby arrived, and asked the lady what the problem was. It was then that she pointed the finger at the startled Mr. Middleton-Markham, and, despite the policeman's initial instinct that the lady had been mistaken, he arrested the stockbroker and led him away.
After being questioned for three hours, Mr. Markham-Middleton was released without charge, and said:
"I merely acknowledged the woman's presence in the time-honoured fashion. Clearly, in today's world, this was a mistake. I've learnt a valuable lesson today: keep my head down, as if I'm searching for a penny."
But Miss Bande-Wagen said:
"This isn't the end of the matter! I don't appreciate being taken for granted like that. He touched his hat in a suggestive manner, and that long cane he carries, he regards as an extension of his penis!"
Despite the fact that Mr. Middleton-Markham was released without charge, he is to be closely monitored, just as all other men are in the future.