Sarah Hyland has recently been unwillingly exposed to a fan who got a little too touchy for her taste, falling victim to an alleged sexual assault. The young actress’s shady encounter with her physically adoring fan this past Thursday took place at approximately 7:50 p.m. at Sebel Pier One in Sydney, Australia, while attending a party for the cast of Modern Family held by Qantas Airlines. While the actress was taking a break from the festivities outside the event, the brave fan allegedly grasped Hyland’s breast following a fan-celebrity photo, much to her shock. Immediately following the grope, an appalled Hyland shouted “Don’t touch me there!” and pushed the man away, according to E! Online. Shortly after the incident, her security entourage had interceded, and Hyland left the Modern Family party. 29-year-old Nedal Lakmas, the man associated with the incident, has since been arrested and charged for assault with an act of indecency.
Quickly reduced to tears by the assault, Sarah Hyland fled the scene of the incident quickly, even before managing to meet up with waiting fans and co-workers. Upon hearing of his girlfriend’s encounter with an overly friendly fan, Matt Prokop managed to console Hyland in order to sufficiently ward off any real damage to the young actress’ psyche.
Shortly after the sexual assault incident, both Hyland and her boyfriend and fellow actor, Matt Prokop, took to Twitter. Tweeting her fans an apology for leaving the Modern Family cast party early, Hyland wrote “Sorry to all the fans outside the #qantas event that I didn’t get to say hi to but I had to leave due to an inappropriate touch of a fan.” While Hyland responded to the incident with victimized shock, her boyfriend Prokop’s Twitter response was a little more angry, as he tweeted “To the a**** who assaulted Sarah tonight I hope to God you don’t see next week.” Whether Prokop’s recent supportive (yet worryingly threatening) tweets and newly established policy of joining Hyland’s four-man security team on set to ensure her protection is an over-reaction is left to speculation. Angry responses aside, Hyland and Prokop seem to be enjoying a happy relationship, with Hyland appearing to be quite receptive to Prokop’s excessively protective behavior.
Physical idolization and overly friendly fans are no strangers to young actresses, as the unfortunate Sarah Hyland discovered last Thursday. Because of the public appeal Hyland’s role as Modern Family‘s Haley Dunphy has garnered (a quick google search for Sarah Hyland yields the popular suggested search query of “Sarah Hyland Hot”) , it comes as little surprise that the young actress would eventually have a physical confrontation, no matter how unwanted or unprovoked it may have been. Just one of the downsides of fame that Sarah Hyland is sure to come across along the path of her career, sexual assault is a common problem for well-groomed young actresses. Meanwhile, Hyland will be enjoying the hot Sydney culture at the luxurious Bondi Beach for the next two weeks while on set with the rest of the cast of Modern Family.
By Christopher White