District police say man identified in series of encounters in Northwest

August 10, 2012

District police think they have identified a man involved in a series of encounters in Northwest Washington that include approaching youths in the locker room of a public swimming pool, while naked, and repeatedly offering a boy a ride.

Assistant D.C. Police Chief Peter Newsham said officers made an arrest near the Wilson Aquatic Center, adjacent to Woodrow Wilson High School in Chevy Chase, after the latest incident on Wednesday.

Newsham did not call the man arrested a suspect, saying he was charged only in an outstanding warrant in connection with a crime unrelated to the allegations involving the boys, ages 9 to 11.

But the assistant chief called the incidents “disturbing” and said police “are confident we have identified the person involved in these incidents.”

Police identified the man arrested on the warrant as a 68-year-old resident of the Mount Pleasant area of Northwest.

He was charged with unlawful entry, and the case is on the domestic violence docket. On Thursday, a D.C. Superior Court judge ordered him held for 30 days for a mental competency examination. His attorney did not immediately return a call for comment.

Police said they are investigating whether any of the incidents rise to the level of a crime.

Newsham said detectives want the public’ s help to “gather any people out there who may have information that could potentially lead to charges. We want to make sure that if there was criminal behavior involved that someone is charged.”

Police said they are convinced that three incidents on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday are connected. They have said similar descriptions of the man were provided.

On Monday, police received a report of a man walking around Mount Pleasant carrying pornography. Police did not say whether the man showed anyone the pornography or whether someone spotted him with it.

On Tuesday, police said three boys complained that a nude man made overtures to them in the locker room of the aquatic center. Authorities did not provide details on what the man said or did.

The next day, police said a boy reported that a man in a blue, four-door Chevrolet followed him as he walked along the 4800 block of 36th St. NW just off Connecticut Avenue “and repeatedly offered him a ride.” He did not get in the car.

Police said the man was arrested later that day.

Police also are investigating a report from April 27 that at the time did not raise immediate alarm, but given the latest incidents is now under closer scrutiny.

People living in the American University Park neighborhood called police when they spotted a man distributing fliers offering tutoring services to boys. Police would not say why they think the same man might be involved.

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