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California

Police look for victim in body-shaming photo taken by Playboy model at L.A. gym

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A Playboy model was slammed by the public after sharing a photo on Snapchat of a naked woman in a locker room at a gym.
(Kris Tripplaar / Sipa USA)

Los Angeles police are seeking to identify a woman who they said was illegally photographed by Playboy model Dani Mathers inside a locker room shower at an LA Fitness gym to move forward with their investigation.

“Without a victim, we can’t go forward,” LAPD spokeswoman Officer Jenny Houser said.

Detectives need the woman to contact police, so they can continue to investigate the misdemeanor offense, she said. Houser urged the victim to report the incident to any Los Angeles police station, or call Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-TIPS (8477).

Detectives had been looking into the matter after receiving a report from LA Fitness of  “illegal distribution” of the image, LAPD Capt. Andrew Neiman said.

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Mathers was slammed by the public on social media after she shared the photo on Snapchat of the naked woman inside the gym’s locker room with the caption: “If I can’t unsee this then you can’t either.”

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After learning about the photo on social media, LA Fitness permanently revoked Mathers’ membership at all of its health clubs.

“Her behavior is appalling and puts every member at risk of losing their privacy,” said Jill Greuling, the company’s executive vice president of operations.

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The company did not say at which gym the incident occurred. Greuling said cellphone use and photography are forbidden in gym locker rooms.

“This is not only our rule, but common decency,” she said.

Critics accused Mathers of body-shaming the woman. Mathers later deleted her Twitter and Instagram accounts.

Mathers apologized on Snapchat for taking the photograph, saying the picture was meant to be sent as a private message, but was posted publicly.

“That was absolutely wrong and not what I meant to do,” she said. “I know that body-shaming is wrong. That is not the type of person I am.”

veronica.rocha@latimes.com

For breaking news in California, follow VeronicaRochaLA on Twitter.

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