Her boyfriend told him to back off, but the man later approached her at the bar when she was alone.
“I felt a hand up my dress that grabbed me,” Antonia said.
“I got really angry and started screaming … It’s not OK, you can’t just touch someone like that against their will. My body is my body.”
She notified security, who kicked the man out, but she also decided to report the assault to police.
Antonia said she had been assaulted before and this time did not want the perpetrator to go unpunished.
“It brings up a lot of trauma for me, but I feel like this time I want to do everything I can to bring this person to justice and hopefully send a message to other women that if I can do it, so can someone else,” she said.
Police from the Moorabbin sexual offence unit are investigating and Detective Leading Senior Constable Peita Measham said she hoped Antonia’s bravery in speaking out would encourage other people to report similar incidents to police.
“It’s terrible,” Detective Leading Senior Constable Measham said.
“No person deserves to be touched inappropriately when they’re out having a good time with friends.”
Detectives released images from CCTV footage on Tuesday from the night of the assault of a man they want to speak to.
Leading Senior Constable Measham said the suspect is believed to be in his late 30s or early 40s and Caucasian.
The detective asked anyone who recognised him to come forward.
Antonia, who is from the United States and is studying in Australia, said after her experience, she hoped all bars, clubs and hotels would scan patron’s ID upon entry and store it in their system so any perpetrators could be easily found.