Burlington, N.C. -- Police in Burlington say they arrested a man who inappropriately touched children and asked more than fifty parents questions about potty training.
Prosecutors charged Jason Glen Humphrey, 39, with two counts of Indecent Liberties with a Child and two counts of Stalking. He was placed in the Alamance County Jail under a $145,000 bond.
Investigators say Humphrey inappropriately touched more than one child under the age of three for his own sexual gratification.
Burlington Police Staff Sergeant Mark Yancey said, "Most people think of you touching a child in a private place. It's not necessarily that he touches what is commonly thought of as a private place. But, the lewd or lascivious part of it is that he's touching a child's stomach or foot to gain sexual gratification by eliciting a bodily response from a child."
Alana Plunkett says Humphrey approached her and her daughter at a Burlington Lowe's Home Improvement store. "He reminded me of a predator. I had goose bumps. I just didn't feel good. Being a mother, you know when something is wrong," Plunkett said. She says Humphrey touched her daughter's side and later ran out of the store after she reported him to store managers.
Several days later, Plunkett says Humphrey approached her and her daughter again. This time it was at a Home Depot.
"I look to my left and he was standing right beside of me. I just started crying. I was like, 'Oh my gosh, Oh my gosh.' I turned to my husband and said, 'That's him. That's him.' I grabbed a hammer because I was so scared," Plunkett said.
Plunkett and many other parents reported encounters with Humphrey. Police say those parents helped them catch him.
"He makes my skin crawl. I've had nightmares over him. Now, I can breathe knowing that he's behind bars and I'm sure all of the other mothers out here, they can breathe as well, knowing that when they go to Target or other stores, they don't have to worry about a creepy man coming up and trying to touch their child," Plunkett said.
In June, WFMY News 2 first reported about a man who followed a woman through a grocery store in Burlington and asked about her daughter's potty training. Several viewers contacted WFMY News 2 and reported similar types of behavior.
Friday morning, Humphrey made his first court appearance and was given a court appointed lawyer. He made bail Friday afternoon.
He currently faces four charges but WFMY News 2 discovered Humphrey has a history of legal trouble.
In 2003, he was convicted of two counts misdemeanor stalking and sentenced to three months probation. Those charges were filed in Orange County, North Carolina.
That same year, in the same county, Humphrey faced five other similar charges. All five were dismissed. The county clerk's office could not find records to explain why.
In 2006, he faced another charge in Orange County. It was also dropped.
Three years later, Humphrey was back in court but this time, it was in Alamance County. He was charged in 2009 but a year later, the charge was dismissed. That's because he met the terms of deferred prosecution.
According to public records, the terms required Humphrey to stay out of legal trouble for six months and complete treatment for mental health issues.
The assistant district attorney who prosecuted this case would not explain the terms or reason why deferred prosecution was used because of Humphrey's pending charges.
Humphrey's next scheduled court appearance is for the end of July.