Man Charged With Peeping In A Panera Women's Bathroom

3:01 PM, Sep 27, 2012   |    comments
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ROCKY RIVER -- Police have charged a man with spying on women in the restroom at Panera.

David W. Coughlin, 53, was arrested Tuesday evening, minutes after a woman using the restroom at the Rocky River Panera saw a man slide his head under the stall.

She screamed and the man ran out of the restroom. Police were called and arrested Coughlin a few blocks away. He was charged with voyeurism, a third degree misdemeanor.

"I am even more shaken up today than I was last night," the victim told WKYC Wednesday. "Thank God I did not have my four and a half year old daughter in there with me. Imagine how that would have traumatized her."

Coughlin has a local arrest record dating back to 1988. It includes previous charges of voyeurism, along with public intoxication, resisting arrest, disorderly conduct, and public indecency.

Suburbs in which he's been arrested include Rocky River, Westlake, Bay Village, Lakewood, Fairview Park and the Metroparks. He has a drug conviction in Sarasota, Florida.

Rocky River Police are looking into other possible incidents, including one from a few months ago, in which Panera surveillance tape appears to show a man disappearing into the same ladies restroom and not exiting until 40 minutes later.

Coughlin was released after his arrest and will appear in Rocky River Municipal Court in October. He could not be reached at the two previous Cleveland addresses listed on his arrest records.

His first run-in with the law was in 1984, when Westlake Police chased him from the women's restroom in Clague Park. He was arrested in the same restroom in 1988, and in the 1990's was picked up for spying on women in the restrooms of a local Borders bookstore, and a K-Mart.

In one instance, according to police reports, he removed a dispenser for femine hygiene products so he could peer through a hole in wall.

Prior to his Tuesday evening arrest, Coughlin was reportedly at the Panera's in Lakewood, but left for Rocky River, telling an employee "there wasn't enough action there."


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