Police: Man sought after committing lewd act on 13-year-old girl

By Erik Avanier - Reporter

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Police are looking for a man who committed a lewd act on a 13-year-old girl while she was walking to school, the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office announced Tuesday night. 

According to police, the teenage girl was inappropriately approached by the unknown man Monday morning on Portsmouth Avenue at Tallyho Avenue, near Trout River Boulevard in Northwest Jacksonville.

Police said the 20- to 25-year-old black man was described as being 5 feet 6 inches to 5 feet 8 inches tall, weighing 160-170 pounds and having a faded Afro hairstyle. He was reportedly wearing a gray shirt and jeans.

Parents told News4Jax that they are very concerned. One of those parents, Terry Wade, said he was especially upset after learning the incident happened just one block away from his home.

"I've got five kids myself that (are) running around here," Wade said. "I'll be damned if that could happen to my kids."

While officers search for the man, police asked parents to talk to their children about being aware of their surroundings. Police said children should not wear headphones so they can hear someone approaching, and parents should walk with their children to school or have them walk in a group.

Wade said he will follow those suggestions and make sure other parents know what happened.

"I'll pass all that information out," he said. "Keep your girls safe and keep your guys safe. Boys or whoever -- keep them safe."

Anyone who has any information about the incident is asked to contact the Sheriff's Office at 904-630-0500 or email JSOCrimeTips@jaxsheriff.org. To remain anonymous and receive a possible reward of up to $3,000, contact Crime Stoppers at 1-866-845-TIPS.

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