Deputies: Woman watched children playing outside in Nocatee, asked to take photos

St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office asking for public’s help after children’s grandparent reported incident

NOCATEE, Fla. – Deputies are working to learn more about a woman who watched as children played outside earlier this month in the Nocatee area and asked to take photos of them, the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office said Wednesday.

Sometime between 10:45 a.m. and 11:15 a.m. Feb. 3, according to the Sheriff’s Office, a woman driving an older model red Hyundai or Honda sedan parked a few houses down from a home on Kenmore Avenue in the Austin Park subdivision and began watching children who were playing outside. The grandparent of the children told deputies that the woman then asked to take photos of the grandchildren.

After the grandparent told the woman no, the woman became angry and said, “It’s a public street, you can’t stop me,” before driving off, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

Deputies said there was rust or damage to the left, front fender of the car, which was believed to have a Florida tag with the letters A, Y and/or W.

The woman, who was wearing a light gray hoodie at the time, was described as being 25 to 35 years old and having a thin build. Deputies said she has messy shoulder-length brown hair and “was very unkept.”

The parent of the children told News4Jax that the woman claimed to be a journalist but wouldn’t specify which organization she worked for.

Neighbor Austin Kuo said the subdivision is quiet and he doesn’t worry about his daughter’s safety, but he will be keeping an eye out for the suspicious woman.

“Just kind of strange," he said. “We’ll look out for her if we see anything weird.”

Anyone with videos, photos or descriptions of the vehicle or tag that could help identify the woman is asked to email Detective K. Peluso at kpeluso@sjso.org.

News4Jax crime and safety expert Ken Jefferson said the grandparent did the right thing by saying no to the woman’s request to take photos. He said that if you’re ever in a situation like this, get a good description of the person and report it to law enforcement.

About the Authors: