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Police investigate man photographing children outside Wal-Mart

Posted September 2, 2008

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— Police said Tuesday they are investigating a report of a man taking pictures of children outside a local Wal-Mart.

A shopper told managers of the Wal-Mart at 7701 Raeford Road that a man driving through the store parking lot Monday afternoon was taking pictures of children.

Managers notified police about the suspicious car, which had left by the time officers arrived. Someone got the car's tag number before it left, and police said they traced it to car belonging to a registered sex offender.

Police declined to identify the car's owner and said they don't know whether the offender was the man seen in the parking lot. They also declined to say whether they had located the car or have a suspect.

The shopper who reported the car didn't leave a name with Wal-Mart managers, and police said they don't know if anyone else  saw the man taking pictures.

Shopper Meaghan Wilson, who regularly brings her 7-month-old son, Jayden, to the store, said the incident sends a chill through her.

"Generally, I do (feel safe at Wal-Mart), but hearing stuff like this makes me feel very uncomfortable and it makes me want to leave my child at home with his father," Wilson said. "It angers me. At the same time, I'm appreciative to know that there are people looking out so that we'll know these things."


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  • doyoubwn Sep 3, 2008

    Haggis, as the story is presented to us, the photographer can not be charged with anything. We follow US laws, not UK laws ;) The person in question could not have been removed via trespass laws until the 2nd act after being told to leave to begin with.

    All of that is irrelevant really, since no crime was committed. I just fed a booger to my fish, perhaps WRAL would like to tell a story as to how I am cruel to animals?

  • pam2 Sep 3, 2008

    I agree with clickclackity2...look after your kids and keep them with you. Wal-mart or any other store is not a babysitting service and perverts are everywhere. If you don't know how to keep your child safe after they are born then you should have practiced safe sex or said NO.

  • haggis basher Sep 3, 2008

    What could you charge him with? In the UK there is a law "behaviour likely to cause a breach of the peace" that could be used to deal with the likes of this but apart from Walmart or the mall owners having the guy removed for trespass I don't think any offence is committed but it would be pretty creepy for those whose kids are being photographed......

  • 1trhl Sep 3, 2008

    Just another example of how the local news feeds on, and fuels, the viewers' paranoia.

  • doyoubwn Sep 2, 2008

    Kids and everyone else are photographed walking through Walmart parkinglots. Even WRAL, as photojournalists, know that simply taking photographs of people in public is perfectly legal. Who is the lamer that calls this news?

  • clickclackity2 Sep 2, 2008

    Here's one...how about you watch your kids and not let them run around the store by themselves or with a pack of other kids. And for goodness sake..don't let your kids go to the bathroom alone. I get sick when I see 5 year olds walking to and from the restrooms alone. Newsflash..pedophiles shop at the same stores that you shop at.

  • dbcooper41 Sep 2, 2008

    a suggestion to other moms who are concerned about this story.
    if asked to comment, don't give your first, last, and child's name to someone for a news story.

  • jlh4jdj Sep 2, 2008

    Zog--I agree with you except you don't know that the sex offender deserves it. Keep in mind there are all kind of things that can get you put as a sex offender. I actually would be more worried about the ex-murders that work at some walmarts. Yes they will hire a ex-murder.

  • Zog Sep 2, 2008

    Just food for thought,
    Why wasn’t Wally Worlds video mentioned, they have more and better video cameras then banks have.
    Why didn’t the complainant identify themselves, i.e. if you don’t want to tell who you are the complaint might not be worth the paper it’s written on.
    and while I think sex offenders are the lowest form of scum, if someone had a problem with a known sex offender, a complaint such as this would cause them a lot of grief (which they probably deserve) but the public panic (and yes people hear this stuff and panic) is an injustice to Wally World, law enforcement and the shoppers.

    More info/investigation is needed before anyone puts much faith in such a vague report as this.

  • nufsaid Sep 2, 2008


    You seem to be a liberal with not a lot of sense. You may want to take a look at a dictionary.