An Upper Milford Township family is looking to send a message to an unwanted visitor and a warning to their neighbors.
Residents at 6726 Kings Highway S., who asked that their names not be used because of the sensitive nature of the occurrences, have posted a sign in front of their home that reads, "Peeping Tom in Neighborhood. Be Alert!"
"I want this guy to know that I saw him, and I want the neighbors to know that he's at it again," said the wife and mother of three.
The couple say they have had two incidents in the past two weeks, and neighbors have had periodic sightings of a man for at least two years. She said the incidents tend to ebb and flow.
The most recent involving this family prompted a report through regarding a May 18 incident about 10 p.m. In that incident, the person outside triggered a backyard motion detector turning on a light. While the parents went outside to investigate, their 6-year-old son said he saw someone open the front door and try to come inside. The man was scared away as the parents returned inside.
The father concedes his son is young, but says the vivid description adds credibility to the story. He said the intruder was described as white, tall and thin with short curly hair, and wearing jeans, black shoes and a shirt with black and white vertical stripes.
He said most of the incidents have been prowling or peeking through windows, but attempting to enter the house brings a whole new level of concern.
"We're wondering if it's escalating now," he said.
He believes that instead of the man being content to peek in windows, he wants to lure the parents outside and snatch a child.
The first recent incident for this family occurred the previous week. The motion detector again triggered the outdoor light. The woman said she saw a figure running away.
Most incidents seem concentrated between 9 p.m. and 1 a.m., they say, based on their own experiences and those they have heard in the neighborhood.
The couple does not believe the incidents are intended burglaries. They said they are unaware of any recent reported thefts.
"Everyone who has reported incidents has kids," she said, noting there are several children in the neighborhood.
They also said they were told a little girl in the neighborhood was approached two years ago by a stranger meeting the general description. The girl was grabbed by her wrist, but managed to escape, the mother said she has been told.
The mother said she saw a red pickup truck with a cap speed from the area following the May 18 incident. She said a red pickup truck with a cap also was involved in the incident with the neighborhood girl two years ago, but she does not know if the truck descriptions match.
She also urged her neighbors to report what they see to police so they will have a better chance of catching the man.
"Many people have talked about it," she said. "Some have reported it. We need as much information as we can get."