WA fish thrower helps catch accused groper

WA fish thrower helps catch accused groper
Friday, June 20, 2014 - 1:47pm

By John Hopperstad

Seattle, WA (KCPQ) -- Summer season means bigger crowds around the northwest. Police tell Q13 FOX News that can also mean more victims for predators.

Fortunately for the large crowds at Pike Place Market, someone is looking out for them.

Jason Scott works at Pike Place Fish Company where tourists flock to watch them toss fish. But while all eyes are on flying salmon, Scott keeps an eye on the crowd, watching out for anything unusual.

"All of us here and the whole market look out for each other," said Scott.

His keen eyes paid off when he saw a man groping women in the large crowd.

"We were watching him and he actually exposed himself to a woman out on the deck," said Scott.

Alethia Leondakis, a caregiver for an 80-year old woman in a wheelchair, said the same man also exposed himself to the both of them, and followed them all over the market.

"It was incredibly upsetting," said Leondakis. "I mean it's really predatory, like a wolf. I feel protective of my client, and i'm not a violent person, but i wanted to kick him."

Thanks to Scott, police caught the man.

Th market is only going to get more crowded as the Summer season kicks off, as are a lot of outdoor venues, and police say predators are attracted to crowds whether to grope or pickpocket. They advise people to be aware of their surroundings, keep valuables tucked away, and, if they feel an inappropriate touch, search out an officer and report it.

If you're at Pike Place Market, you get extra help: the watchful eyes of Jason Scott.

"I'm just thankful that we got someone off the street like that because I have a young daughter at home and it would break my heart to see that happen to her."

Police aren't naming the suspect until he is charged, which they expect soon. Because he's been arrested for the same crime in other states, they expect the indecent exposure charge to be upgraded to a felony. 

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