(Wilkesboro, NC) -- Tuesday, a Miller Creek man was arrested after a strange visit to the WalMart on Highway 421 in Wilkesboro.
The Wilkesboro Police Department was called in reference to a man who was taking pictures of women in WalMart and then attempting to pleasure himself in the store.
While police were en route to the scene, they were notified that the suspect was driving around in a burgundy Dodge Caravan, heading towards the KFC. The officer was able to locate the vehicle and pulled it over in the Fast Track parking lot.
When the officer approached the vehicle he found the driver to appear to be wiping off of his hands. The suspect was identified as 38-year-old Patrick D. Allen.
When asked about the allegations at WalMart, police said Allen's explanations didn't add up and his story kept changing. He admitted to using some vaseline in the store to clear up a wound he had and asked if he could just pay for it.
Allen then he admitted that he had started taking pictures of females at GameStop, Dollar Tree, Radio Shack, Wal-Mart and Aaron's rental. Investigators found pictures on Allen's cell phone of different views of females from the above named places. The picture ranged from close up's of the female's crotch area to pictures of the females buttocks.
Police then took Allen to the WalMart so that they could view surveillance video, in which it confirmed that Allen had been inside for 45-minutes, at one point following one woman down every aisle she went down. On five or six different occasions you can see Allen squat down as if he was looking on the bottom shelf and lean over, place his phone underneath her dress and take pictures.
Allen then went to the vaseline isle, took some out of the container, then placed it back on the shelf in a different location. He proceeded to walk down a couple of isles, pulled the front of his shorts down, and appeared to pleasure himself for a few seconds.
Assistant District Attorney Rebecca Dowdell advised that there had to be a victim in the case and the victim had to be someone of the opposite sex in order to charge Allen with the lewd acts of conduct inside the store.
Allen was then taken into custody for the Simple Possession of Marijuana and Damage to Personal Property, and No Operators License and transported to WCI.
News 2's Liz Crawford showed the police report to several people in downtown Winston-Salem to get their reactions on the incident and why the man wasn't charged.
"The victim had to be of the opposite sex which seems rather arbitrary. I don't understand why that necessarily has to be the case. It seems that anyone who saw this could easily be offended," said Francis Favorini.
Ashantee Smith added, "But there is children around in the Wal-Mart shopping center. I'm not understanding how that's not indecent exposure."
Eric Knaff questions the report on the "no victim" grounds because there are victims, they just don't know it.
"I think if the ladies were being videotaped and did not know that they were being videotaped than they are victims, but I think if we let those ladies know who they are then they probably would want to pursue that to some degree," said Knaff.
Some other folks asked about the offender who didn't even get a slap on the wrist for his lewd act.
Amanda Thompson said, "If he's exhibiting that kind of behavior, he's probably exhibited that before and gotten away with it."
"It's doing him a disservice. Obviously, there's something really wrong with him and his view of what's proper, what's appropriate and you're not helping him," added Abby Perrotta.
News 2 also took the incident report David Freedman, an attorney in Winston- Salem. He said there is the potential to charge the man with secret peeping and indecent exposure. However, without the victim or proper evidence, you can't go any further.
"There's not enough there unless they were able to identify someone that did see him or somehow they were able to seize his telephone and find pictures that were made that consistent with what showed up on the video, in which case it looks like he could be charged with a felony for secret peeping," David Freedman, attorney with Crumpler Freedman Parker & Witt told News 2.
In response to the part about the victim having to be of the opposite sex, Attorney David Freedman doesn't interpret the indecent exposure law that way. Freedman said the gender of the victim wouldn't matter.
WFMY News 2, Wilkesboro Police