[UPDATED: Tuesday, October 24 at 9:45am] Following reports that a man was stalking an eight-year-old girl and her 12-year-old brother in Crown Heights over the weekend, the suspected stalker turned himself in to police on Monday afternoon and the two siblings recanted their story, police say.
The kids were left with a babysitter while their parents were away on vacation, the New York Post reports. Unhappy with the sitter, the two made up the story. Their father is a NYPD detective, according to the New York Daily News.
While surveillance footage does show the man in front of the family’s home, according to the Post he said that he previously lived at the house and was passing by just to have at look.
The siblings admitted to investigators that they made up the story and wrote a letter reading, “Watch out. I am watching you!! Your daughter is cute,” and put it in their mailbox.
After speaking to police yesterday afternoon, the man was released and no charges have been filed against him.
CROWN HEIGHTS – The NYPD is requesting the public’s assistance in identifying the man seen in the below video [removed] in connection to stalking a young sister and brother in Crown Heights.
According to police, at approximately 8:25am on Friday, October 20, the 8-year-old girl was walking with her friend to the school bus stop near Eastern Parkway and Brooklyn Avenue when she noticed a strange man ducking between cars following her. When she got to the school bus stop, the man fled when he saw other parents there, police say.
Later that day, at approximately 1:30pm, police say the same man flagged down the school bus carrying the girl’s 12-year-old brother as he was about to be dropped off near their home. The bus driver stopped and spoke to the suspect who said he was there to pick up the 12-year-old boy. The bus driver noticed that the man was not on the authorized list to pick up students and told him to leave before he called the police. The suspect then fled in an unknown direction, according to the police.
At approximately 7pm that evening, the 8-year-old sister saw the same man on the front steps of her house creeping around and taking pictures of the inside of the home. Police say the girl approached the man and he allegedly asked who she lives with and where in the house she sleeps. The girl refused to answer and the man left the scene on foot toward Nostrand Avenue.
At approximately 11:15am on Saturday, October 21, the same man approached the 12-year-old brother outside his house and inquired about his parents and where his bedroom is located. The brother did not answer and went into the house. The suspect then got into a white, four-door sedan and took off toward New York Avenue, according to police.
Shortly after 5pm on Saturday, police say the family found a note in their mailbox with the message—”Watch out. I am watching you!! Your daughter is cute.”
Police describe the suspect as a bald, black male, with a dark complexion, medium build, approximately 5′ 9″ tall, and 160 pounds. He was filmed by a surveillance camera parking a white, four-door sedan in front of the victims’ home. He then got out of the car, stood on the sidewalk, and stared at their house.
Anyone with information in regards to the above incidents is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers website at WWW.NYPDCRIMESTOPPERS.COM or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.