JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Many parents who live in the Miramar neighborhood off San Jose Boulevard are on high alert after they said a man was spotted following women and children in his white SUV.
Jacksonville police urged Miramar residents to keep a lookout for the white SUV.
"It's very concerning," Caryn Voyster, a mother, told News4Jax on Monday.
Parents, who have been communicating through the Nextdoor app, said the driver of the SUV has followed children and he also parked outside Granada Park to watch children while they play.
A woman said she filed a police report after the man followed her as she walked her dogs near the intersection of London Road and Peachtree Street. She was able to use her cellphone to take a photo of his license plate.
"That was great thinking on her toes and might have saved a lot of us," said Courtney Wilson, a concerned mother. “The more people that know, I think the eyes will see something and he’ll get caught.”
The woman who filed the report told News4Jax that police ran the plate and it came back registered to a man who was arrested in 2015 on a charge of lewd acts in front of children.
"By noticing suspicious activity and reporting it to police, they are doing the right thing," said Gil Smith, News4Jax crime and safety analyst. "And they should look out for this car because it’s unknown what his intentions are.”
Parents praised the Nextdoor app, saying it allows them to share information when there is a possible threat to them or their children.
"You see something and realize you're not the only one who saw it," Christina Groger, a mother, said. "So it really gives us a chance to communicate together with people we don't know but are still in our neighborhood."
Another mother, Heather Riley, added, "I’ve had people, not just on Nextdoor, but friends circulating text messages about the white GMC, the license plate number, everything to be aware of what’s going on in our neighborhood."
Police cannot arrest the man because no crime was committed. That's why News4Jax is not reporting the license plate number.