Simon Barnett's daughter broke down in tears after she was verbally abused while trying to comfort a woman who had herself been the victim of abuse.
The Newstalk ZB host today revealed details of the altercation, saying his daughter had overheard a nasty conversation between a mother and her angry daughter at a Westfield mall.
"There was a mum and a daughter, who was about 14 or 15. The mum and the daughter just starting having a blazing row. It was a verbal altercation," he said on ZB today.
He explained the woman's daughter launched into a 10-minute tirade of abuse, saying nasty things about her mum, and lashing out at her weight.
"It was highly offensive language. The daughter said to the mum 'you're just effing fat', 'you're just an effing pig'. 'you're too lazy'.
"This went on for around 10 to 15 minutes. The daughter then said 'you can go eff yourself' and walked off."
Barnett says his daughter, who is a "kind and caring" young woman, was shocked at the girl's behaviour towards her mother.
Instead of ignoring the altercation, Barnett's daughter tried to comfort the mother, who had just been on the receiving end of a nasty spray.
But when Barnett's daughter approached the mother, she copped a nasty spray of her own.
"My daughter was listening to all this and she said to the mother and said 'I couldn't help but overhear that. I just wanted to check you're okay.'
"The mum then said 'it's none of your effing business, it's how our family talk to each other. Leave me alone, go away.'"
Barnett said it left her daughter, who had the best of intentions, in tears.
"My daughter rang me and she's a sensitive young woman, she was in tears and said 'Dad, I just feel like I've done the wrong thing, should I have said anything?'
"My gut feeling was absolutely, I said I don't think you've the wrong thing at all.
"When do you get involved? Do you get involved in a verbal altercation?"
Barnett and his co-host Phil Gifford have since used the altercation to discuss if and when it is okay to check up on a victim of verbal abuse when you've overheard an incident.