SLO sex offender arrested for masturbating in public

Vernon Pete Gray

An unregistered sex offender stalked a woman in a shopping center parking lot on Sunday and masturbated to her while apparently videotaping her on his phone, according to the San Luis Obispo Police Department. Officers arrested the man promptly after learning about the incident Thursday morning.

At about 9:30 a.m., police learned of a report on social media describing what occurred on Sunday. The victim had stated that a tall man with long brown hair was following her and watching her as she put items in her vehicle in the shopping center parking lot at the corner of Madonna and Los Osos Valley roads.

When the woman returned to her vehicle shortly later after visiting another store, the man had parked his vehicle next to hers. The man then pointed his phone in her direction and began masturbating.

The victim immediately left the area. She described the suspect’s vehicle as a white SUV with a crack in the lower right corner of the windshield and a sticker in the right corner of the rear window.

An officer contacted the victim, obtained a statement and worked with detectives to develop leads. Because of the unique description of the man, officers managed to identify Vernon Pete Gray, 35, as a suspect in the case.

Gray, of San Luis Obispo, is known to have failed to register as a sex offender and has prior convictions for similar offenses, according to police.

Police showed the victim a photo lineup of six suspects, and she identified Gray. Additionally, investigators obtained further evidence linking Gray to Sunday’s incident.

At about 1:47 p.m. Thursday, officers located Gray at a job site in SLO and arrested him. Officers booked Gray into the San Luis Obispo County Jail on charges of indecent exposure and violating parole.

Gray’s bail for the indecent exposure charge is set at $20,000. However, he is being held without bail on the parole violation charge, according to police.

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2 Comments about “SLO sex offender arrested for masturbating in public”

  1. obispan says:

    Theft is already de facto legal in California, citation after citation, never jail. The police do not even respond to calls of the homeless encampment residents running out of Ralph’s with alcohol because it is so frequent. Maybe if enough people masturbate in public they will give up on that as well.

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