There are a few things you want to see when you roll over in bed. Your loving partner, maybe, or a sliver of moonlight slipping through the curtains.
A bald white guy you’ve never met is not among them.
But that’s what Ana Poole saw one August night in south Minneapolis, according to WCCO. Her only warning was the sound of leaves rustling outside. Then she saw an unfamiliar face staring at her through her bedroom window.
After a moment of stunned silence, she got up, slapped the glass and yelled at him to get the hell out – like he was some kind of gigantic racoon trying to rifle through her trash. Eventually, he ran off. But Poole was shaken.
So were several women on the 2400 block of Harriet Avenue, just a few blocks away from Poole’s place. Last year, WCCO reported on a similar-looking “Peeping Tom” terrorizing the neighborhood. In some accounts, the stranger climbed atop benches or recycling bins to get a good look at his victims. The police were called every time, but there was no word of an arrest.
Today, WCCO says, there are signs up in the neighborhood warning of a “male stranger” caught staring at women in their own homes, and locals are a little on edge. There’s little they can do about it, other than installing floodlights or security cameras.
It’s easy for some to dismiss voyeurism as a harmless offense, but victims are often left unable to feel safe or relaxed in their own homes long after the actual incident is over. Until south Minneapolis’ Peeping Tom is caught, the neighborhood is going to be sleeping with one eye open.