At least twice this week, a man behaving suspiciously approached women and girls in Baton Rouge parking lots — outside an exercise gym at Perkins Rowe in one case and outside a cheerleading gym in the other, according to the East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Office.
The man made inappropriate comments and, in one case, grabbed a woman’s arm, deputies said. They said they don’t know yet if the same man was involved in both incidents.
Casey Rayborn Hicks, a spokeswoman for the East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office, described in a news release what happened in the two cases.
In the most recent incident, on Thursday, a man started walking toward a woman as she was leaving Bally’s Gym at Perkins Rowe about 9 p.m. and appeared to be filming her with his cellphone. As the woman got close to her car, the man started asking her questions about her age and where she lived. He then grabbed her arm as she started to get in the car.
The woman pulled free and closed the door, but the man went around to the passenger side and knocked on her window as she drove away.
The man was described as Hispanic, between 18 to 20 years old, between 5 feet, 5 inches and 6 feet tall, and wearing a gray shirt and blue jeans. He appeared to be driving a dark sedan.
On Monday, Sheriff’s Office deputies arrived at LA Cheer Force on Tiger Bend Road after receiving a report that two teenage girls left the building about 8 p.m. and were headed for their cars when a man wearing a white T-shirt and jeans walked toward them making comments of a sexual nature.
The two girls got in their cars and left. However, the man returned to the building at 8:37 p.m.,wearing only a T-shirt and what seemed to be dark-colored underwear, according to an employee.
The man, described as Hispanic, between the ages of 17 and 19 and about 5 feet, 6 inches to 5 feet, 8 inches tall, was looking through the front glass door. When the employee tried to contact him, the man ran to his vehicle and left, driving what appeared to be a silver hatchback or possibly a newer model SUV.
Although it’s not known if the two incidents are related, the Sheriff’s Office is asking people to be aware of their surroundings. Anyone with information about either of the incidents is asked to call the Sheriff’s Office at 389-5000 or Crime Stoppers anonymously at 344-STOP.