A man was seen masturbating in public Tuesday night near Western Washington University – barely less than 24 hours after the same incident was reported in the same area Monday night.
Bellingham police were called to the 1000 block of North Garden Street around 9:45 p.m. for the report of a man masturbating outside a basement window of a home. The two witnesses, who are Western students, said the suspect was wearing jeans, according to police Lt. Danette Beckley.
Officers were unable to locate the suspect.
Beckley didn’t provide further information, and said the police department is unsure whether this incident is related to the previous day’s event, or the numerous other instances near Western, the Columbia, York and Sehome neighborhoods, or the cases from early 2017.
Police have investigated at least 11 or more complaints of voyeurism or indecent exposure in the last few months and have yet to develop a suspect.
Some of the cases show similarities, such as the suspect exposing himself or masturbating in a public place. In other instances, the suspect attracted the attention of people inside a home and exposed himself near a door or window.
In all cases, the suspect was a white man in his 20s. He’s always gone before police arrive.
Authorities said they have increased patrols in neighborhoods surrounding the university, but that added attention appears to have not deterred the culprit’s actions.
Tips can be sent to police Detective Sue Howell at 360-778-8682, or anonymously at 360-778-8611, or online at cob.org/tips.
List of most recent lewd incidents:
▪ Oct. 25: A man was masturbating outside the basement window of a home in the 1000 block of North Garden Street.
▪ Oct. 24: A man was seen masturbating in Laurel Park in the Sehome neighborhood.
▪ Oct. 14: A man was masturbating on the back porch of a home in the 1200 block of North Garden Street.
▪ Oct. 13: A man wearing a tiger mask and dark clothing was seen masturbating outside the window of a home in the 300 block of Gladstone Street. The man knocked on the window a couple times to make sure the resident could see what he was doing.
▪ Sept. 26: A neighbor reported a male was using a phone to record or photograph his neighbor from outside the bathroom window of a home in the 2600 block of Peabody Street.
▪ Early September: Five voyeurism incidents occurred near Western, in the 800-1000 blocks of East Maple, Billy Frank Jr. and High streets, as well as an occurrence in the 1300 block of Franklin Street. Most of the incidents took place between 1 a.m. and 6 a.m.
▪ Early 2017: Five cases of voyeurism within a week happened near Western, mostly in the York and Sehome neighborhoods. A male was reported to have shined a flashlight or phone into women’s windows.