Night flasher ‘slaps buttocks’ to female university students
Published: Wednesday, August 29, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, August 29, 2012 21:08
University police recently released a surveillance photo of an unidentified male believed to have been responsible for several incidents of indecent exposure over the past year.
University Police Chief Patrick Ogden said that students in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources and athletes at the Delaware Field House should be especially vigilant, as the suspect has struck near South College Avenue.
“[The suspect] hides in the woods by the bus stop and removes his clothes,” Ogden said. “What is unique about him is that he doesn’t say anything. He slaps his buttocks and the person turns around and sees him. Naturally, they’ll scream and he runs away.”
Since the sightings began, there have been five reported incidents in 2011 and two reported this year. The most recent case, which occurred in July when the photo was taken, went unreported. Recently-installed surveillance cameras were the only reason the latest incident was discovered by police, Ogden said.
“This time last year the cameras weren’t there yet,” he said. “They will be a big help now.”
Public safety officials have increased efforts to catch the suspect by installing cameras and assigning more officers to patrol near the scene of the crimes.
According to Ogden, the suspect generally strikes between 8 p.m. and midnight and primarily targets college-aged women. He is described as a 25 to 30-year-old white male, weighing 175 to 190 pounds. He is estimated to be between 5-foot-10 and 6 feet with dark stubble and a shaved head.
Ogden said he hopes the captured footage will help identify and eventually lead to the suspect’s arrest. He said victims and witnesses should alert police immediately if they have information.
“When you’re out on campus and you see something like this, call 911 right away,” he said. “Sometimes people won’t call the police until half an hour after the incident.”
Anyone who sees the suspect should contact university police at 302-831-2222. Those who have information on the suspect’s identity can call the Criminal Investigations Unit at 302-831-7433 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.