Ladies, Beware Of The ‘Serial Hugger’

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Photography by NHOPHOTOS; Chicago, IL

Police officers in St. Louis, MO, have identified a “serial hugger” who has been terrorizing women throughout the city for several months. Officers are currently pondering whether or not the “cuddle monster” should receive punishment for his actions.

According to a local news station, at least 36 women claim they were tricked into hugging a man they did not know. The alleged hugger approaches women who are shopping alone and pretend to be a past neighbor.

Detective Marshall Broughton said the man would say, “Hi, remember me? I lived down the street in the corner house. How ya been?” According to Broughton, the man would act quickly and leave women embarrassed for not knowing him. In other occurrences the suspect would tell his female victims that he was celebrating his birthday and proceed to hug them. Another says she was wearing scrubs when he approached her and claimed to have met her at a local hospital, when his wife was giving birth. One woman claimed the man even kissed her on the lips. Broughton says dozens of women came forward after a local TV station ran a story about the serial hugger, some citing similar incidents that dated as far back as three years ago.

The man has been described as a 44-year-old Caucasian with brown hair. The suspect, whose name has not been relased, was arrested by Warson Woods police on June 20, but released after questioning. Prosecutors haven’t yet determined if they will press third-degree assault charges. Broughton added that since the man’s arrest, he hasn’t heard any new reports of hug attacks.