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Suspect wanted for groping victims near trails at Creve Coeur Lake Park

Police said the three separate incidents occurred at Creve Coeur Lake in the last four months

CREVE COEUR, Mo. — The Maryland Heights Police Department is asking for the public’s help in identifying a suspect involved in groping incidents in a popular park area.

Officer Terri Mancusi with the Maryland Heights Police Department wants visitors to look for a man in his late teens to mid-20s with a medium build. 

Mancusi said he has a distinctive hairstyle that is tall on the top and wavy and smooth on the sides and back.

The victims described the man as having light facial hair. Police believe the suspect is about 5 feet 10 inches tall. He was last seen wearing a tank top and black shorts and smoking “what appeared to be” a cigarette. 

Police said the three separate incidents happened at Creve Coeur Lake Park near the southside walking paths. The incidents took place in the last four months. No other information about the incidents or victims has been released.

The rash of gropings has some park goers on high alert. 

"That's why we came out this morning," Tammy Chapman told 5 On Your Side, "specifically to take the wooded paths to keep our eyes open for anyone who looks suspicious...but I saw nobody." 

Others are just now learning about the gropings. Jeannie Waser was out walking her dog Thursday.

"It will concern me now," Waser said. "I'll be more observant now."

Marc Green walks Creve Coeur Park frequently and he wants people to be aware whenever they are out in nature.

"I wouldn't just isolate it to this Creve Coeur Park, there's a lot of wooded hikes in the Missouri and the St. Louis County area," Green said. "It's just being aware of your surroundings, have a plan, hike with a buddy if you feel threatened, hike with a whistle if you feel threatened."

Anyone who can help identify the man should call officer Terry Mancusi at 314-738-2358 or email tmancusi@marylandheights.com. You can also call the department’s tip line at 314-209-TIPS(8477).

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