It was the disturbing moment when Modern Family star Sarah Hyland was allegedly groped by a fan.
The fan was arrested and taken away in a police van as a clearly distressed Sarah Hyland walked out of the event.
The accused fan has been identified as 29-year-old Nedal Lakmas, an autograph hound who haunts red carpets for celebrities to pose with. His Facebook page has photos with Katy Perry, Kirsten Dunst, and other celebrities along with the pathetic message: "I want an actual girlfriend. Can somebody set me up with one?"
Hyland was surrounded by bodyguards and police on Friday when she arrived at Sydney’s famed Bondi Beach with boyfriend Matt Prokop. One bodyguard held an umbrella to thwart photographers.
Photographers asked, “Sarah, have your impressions of Australia been tarnished by this?”
Hyland is in Australia to film several episodes of Modern Family along with the rest of the cast. She tweeted that her visit so far has been: “Heaven and Hell.”
Modern Family Executive Producer Steve Levitan said, “She's fine. It was handled very, very quickly.”
Other Modern Family stars were tight lipped about the incident.
Julie Bowen said, “I really don't know anything about it.”
Sofia Vergara ignored questions about the incident.
The extra security was in sharp contrast to the pandemonium that erupted when the Modern Family cast arrived in Australia where the show is a huge hit. Fans at the airport came close enough to jostle the stars and take selfies.
Celebs attending opening night of Ringling Brothers circus in New York were shocked by what had happened to Hyland. Jenny McCarthy revealed she has been groped on the red carpet too.
She said, “I've had it happen numerous times, I have got to say five. I’ve gotten kicked, I’ve been groped. I’ve been pinched. I’ve been hit. You always have to be on guard and have security around you!”