Friday, August 15 2014, 07:50 AM EDT
New Details: Police Respond to Possible Riverview Park Sex Offender
Ryan Bowman showed NewsChannel9 the public bathroom at Riverview Park where he said he interrupted a man in the process of a lewd act.
"I walked into the bathroom, and saw him standing on the toilet with his pants down," said Bowman.
Standing on the toilet, Bowman said, so he could look outside at the mothers and children in the park.
"Patrol officers responded to the scene," said Chattanooga Police Chief Fred Fletcher. "And, they were never able to make contact with the witnesses."
The woman who first told us about the incident does not believe they tried very hard.
"They drove by slowly one time, and I saw them drive down one street," she said. "I was walking towards them to tell them about it, but didn't get the chance to talk to them about it."
Monday, the Chattanooga police were reassuring, promising more visibility around the park.
"We initiated some close patrols, direct patrols to make sure officers are directed to go back by this area in case there are more incidents like this," said Fletcher.
In addition, we ran into Hamilton County Detective Mike Cox at the park Monday morning. Cox said he decided to get involved after watching our story Tuesday night.
"The only reason I'm involved in this, is if it's a potential sex offender," he said. "If it's not proven it's a sex offender, then it's a case for the CPD to handle."
There are 554 registered sex offenders in Hamilton County. Cox, along with probation and parole officers, look after all of them.
If cox can prove the suspect is on the sex offender registry, he will be arrested for violating the law, which prohibits offenders from coming within 1,000 feet of schools, day cares, or parks.