A teenage girl who said she was groped by an older man on a United Airlines flight was reportedly told her "extremely short shorts" were the cause.
Chelsea Schiffel, who was 15 years old at the time, was traveling from Los Angeles to Sydney with her family, Daily Mail reported.
According to Schiffel, her mother Narelle had gotten up to speak with a family member who was seated in the back of the plane when an older male passenger touched her breasts twice.
Narelle quickly reported the incident to airline staff members and demanded different seats. The family said they were told to stay in their same seats for the remainder of the flight.
In a letter obtained by News Corp, United Airlines denied the family’s allegations and criticized the teen’s choice of clothing.
"The flight attendants and passengers also stated that you and your daughter were allowed to move to other seats several times, that Chelsea repeatedly moved in and out of her seat, crawling over the other customer who was attempting to sleep, and that your daughter wore extremely short shorts," the letter read. "You have provided no evidence of any negligence on the part of United regarding this matter."
Schiffel took issue with the airlines' account of events.
"For me it comes across, by them saying that, [it] feels like they were telling me that I was asking for it,” she told News Corp.
Attempts by the family to take legal action against United Airlines proved unsuccessful due to a lack of sufficient evidence that the incident occurred.