Police: Man asking women for hugs at St. Louis-area stores - KMOV.com

Police: Man asking women for hugs at St. Louis-area stores

WEST ST. LOUIS COUNTY (KMOV) -- A woman shopping at the Des Peres, Missouri Schnucks store was approached by a man, who claimed to know her.  After a brief conversation on June 12, he asked for a hug.  She obliged, but later contacted police. 

Police say they’re hearing of two more incidents at the same store and at least one more similar incident in Fairview Heights, Illinois.

“We just have an individual who is approaching women inside the grocery store and acting like he knows them from their old neighborhood.  He carries on a conversation.  He’s pretty convincing and he culminates it with trying to get a birthday hug.  He tells them it’s his 44th birthday and he’d like a hug and that’s it,” said Captain Charles Milano.

Police consulted the prosecuting attorney to confirm that no crime was committed.  The man never groped or assaulted the women.  Still, police want to talk to the man to confirm that he’s harmless.

Fairview Heights Police say a woman, there, was approached in the Schnucks parking lot on June 13.  She reportedly denied the man a hug and called police.

Des Peres Police sent out an intelligence report to other police departments in the region to ask them to be on the lookout for the man. Here’s a description:  he’s white, between the ages of 30 and 40. He’s about 5’6” and 170 pounds. He may be driving a silver Nissan sedan.

Schnucks provided surveillance video of the Des Peres encounter to police. Police haven’t released the video to the public.

Police said there was no evidence the man actually knew any personal information about the women or was stalking them. They say the encounters appear to be random. It’s possible the man truly believes he’s acquainted with the women, but police won’t know until they identify him and talk to him, explained Milano.

“We’d just like to know, really, what his motives are.”


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