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“Hugging Man” Identified As Sex Offender

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DES PERES, Mo. (KMOX) — Police in Des Peres say they’ve got some leads on the man who is being called the serial hugger. He has reportedly been identified as a sex offender after a woman picked him out in a photo lineup, but they still do not have him in custody.

Police say he’s being described as persistent, convincing women he meets in the grocery store that he knows them, from the old neighborhood, and then asking them for a hug, because he insists, it’s his birthday. After the hug, he just walks away. “We’ve gotten several calls, from High Ridge, all the way out to Fairview Heights, Illinois,” says Detective Michael Broughton, who indicates up to 10 women have complained about being approached and touched by the man. When he tried that at a Fairview Heights Schnucks store, the woman refused and called police.

Police do not believe this is a stalker at work and there has been no other physical contact other than the hug.  He’s a white male in his 30s or 40s, 5 -feet 6-inches tall and weighing about 170 pounds. They believe he’s driving a silver Nissan Sedan.

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