Police continue to investigate sex offender incident

Police continue to investigate an incident involving a registered sex offender taking photographs of participants in the 29th annual Seymour Splash at the Shields Park Pool.

City officers were called at 4:46 p.m. Friday after a woman reported a man taking photographs with a camera equipped with a telephoto lens of participants in the meet.

The annual three-day swim meet, which drew 525 swimmers from across the state along with their families, took place over the weekend at the pool at Eighth and Park streets.

The man is a registered sex offender in Marion County as the result of an incident that occurred in the mid-1990s, Police Chief Bill Abbott said. Police believe they have identified the man but have not released his name as the investigation continues.

The woman was able to recognize the man from a previous swim meet in Ohio and then called police, Abbott said.

The man had been arrested for obstructing an investigation in an incident there, Abbott said.

“At first, many just thought he was a legitimate photographer with a newspaper or something before the woman recognized him,” Abbott said. “The woman gave a great description of him, and others gave good descriptions, too.”

Abbott said the man was inside the pool area within 15 to 20 feet of the children while taking pictures.

Police said witnesses confronted the man, and he left in a light green Honda passenger car before police arrived. That vehicle is registered to an address in Beech Grove.

Officer Seth Sage responded to the report and spoke with multiple witnesses. Some of those witnesses were able to take photographs and submit them to police.

Once police are able to locate him, they will see if he violated the terms of his registry, Abbott said. He said police are following up with the incident with the Marion County Sheriff’s Department.

“With sex offenders, there are different classifications of where they can be,” Abbott said. “If this violates one of his requirements, then we can request charges for being here, and they (Marion County) could also look at requesting charges.”

Abbott said the public should not panic but should remain aware of their surroundings.

[sc:pullout-title pullout-title=”At a glance” ][sc:pullout-text-begin]

Call Seymour police at 812-522-1234 if you have information about the man who was taking photographs at the Seymour Splash on Friday.