Gwen Snyder was assaulted twice.

Once sexually by a drunk guy in a hotel bar during the Democratic National Convention, the second time bureaucratically, she feels, by the district attorney's refusal to prosecute.

The D.A.'s office, however, may be changing its mind.

The change might flow from a slowly deepening appreciation of the seriousness of the sexual assault, or it may be the spotlight the case has attracted.

In addition to some online commentary this appeared in Friday's Daily News and Inquirer.

Snyder, 30, is executive director of Philadelphia Jobs with Justice. She was a Bernie Sanders delegate to the convention, tasked with passing along information and instructions to other delegates pledged to the insurgent from Vermont.

One of them was Walter Weeks, a Sanders delegate from Garnet Valley.

Snyder says she spoke to him by phone a couple of times before the convention and exchanged a few words with him early in the week in a hotel elevator.

She ran into him again, she says, Wednesday morning July 27, about 3 a.m.,  in the bar of the Doubletree Hotel, Broad and Locust, where the Pennsylvania delegation was quartered.

Snyder had gone to the Wawa at Broad and Walnut to get some take-out to eat. Once in her room she discovered she didn't have a fork and went downstairs to get one at the bar, which was noisy and crowded, she says.

In the bar she saw Weeks talking to labor lawyer Peter Winebrake, who she knows.

Earlier she had been telling crest-fallen delegates that Sanders, who had conceded, did not want anti-Hillary Clinton demonstrations Wednesday night.

Snyder says Weeks was drunk and asked her for a consolation hug.

She declined, but he persisted. You know, one Berner to another.

Reluctantly, she says she placed her hands "as lightly as I could on his shoulders," at arm's length.

Weeks grabbed her in a bear hug, she says, "and forced his face into my cleavage. He was performing something like cunnilingus near my nipple."

Shocked, she pushed Weeks away, she says, and "he looked at me as if he had been playing around."

She quotes him as saying, "We're still friends, right?" to which she replied they were not.

Snyder says Winebrake witnessed the last part of what happened. In an email to me, Winebrake says, "I merely witnessed Ms. Snyder getting angry with Mr. Weeks after the alleged incident."

Weeks did not respond to a message left with someone who answered the phone at his home, nor to a Facebook message. His Facebook page reveals that he is 74, he attended Frankford High School, he is white-bearded, obese and a dedicated Democrat.

Snyder says she was wearing a long dress and a cardigan, and had only two beers earlier. "I was sober. Tired, that's about it," she says.

"Really shaken," she went to her room, showered "and hyperventilated." Nothing like this had ever happened to her before.

She works with male-dominated labor unions and has worked hard "to build respect and he took that away from me in that moment," she says.

Exhausted, she slept, then dressed and went to the lobby, found a female police officer and reported what had happened.

Because she was deeply committed to the convention, she fulfilled her role as a delegate and waited until Thursday, Aug. 4 before making a statement at the Special Victims Unit.

The male police officer took the report as indecent assault, which is a misdemeanor.

A week later she was told the D.A. had declined to prosecute.

Snyder was crushed.

She called the D.A.'s office and spoke to  James Car­penter, chief of the Fam­ily Vi­ol­ence and Sexu­al As­sault unit, then came in to speak with him in person.

What she says she was told stunned her.

The D.A.'s office had concerns that she had waited a week before making a statement -- even though she reported the assault to police within hours, and the D.A.'s investigating detective recommended no prosecution.

The big reason, Snyder says she was told, was something else: A prosecutor would have trouble convincing a jury the alleged assailant did not know Snyder didn't consent to the groping.


Because he was drunk.

Hearing that, I was stunned too.

Being drunk is a defense?

No, it isn't, says D.A. spokesman Cameron Kline.

"We could never pursue a DUI case if that were true, and we do that all the time," he says. It is possible Snyder got it wrong. It's possible someone committed a gaffe. I don't know.

When Kline and I spoke early in the week, Kline told me the office "would take another look" at the case.

By the end of the week, with the National Organization for Women raising hell and reporters asking questions, the "look" became an investigation.

An alumna of Swarthmore, Snyder is no fool. She knows he-said, she-said cases are hard to win.

But she wants her day in court. Even if there's no conviction, she believes a trial will send a message that there are consequences for bad behavior in the court of public opinion.