Locker Room Peeper Busted
Good Samaritan apprehends registered sex offender disguised as a woman in camp locker room.
A registered sex offender was arrested Friday after roaming around Oregon's Clackamas Aquatic Center and talking with children while dressed as a woman.
Thomas Lee Benson entered a women's locker room and a hot tub, but was spotted by an alert chaperone.
Tayo G. Cotton, 26, an educational coordinator at Self Enhancement Inc. in Portland was supervising a large group of children when he went over to them after hearing giggling and laughing.
He and other adults quickly realized that the children were talking about a man who had gone into the women's locker room and a hot tub.
The man had also struck up several conversations with children.
Cotton spotted the suspect, dressed in a white tank top, shorts and carrying a bag, leaving the dressing room and tried to stop him.
The man realized he was being followed by Cotton and his brisk walk turned into a sprint, Strovink said.
The two ran into the Clackamas Town Center parking lot, then through the Sears department store and into the lot outside Sears.
"I was very very upset. I was glad he was caught. I hope he gets charged with a lot. It's people like that that just really upset me," Cotton said.
The suspect was able to reach through an open rear window of a car being driven slowly by an unsuspecting woman.
Cotton grabbed the suspect by the shoulders, pulling him away.
Just then, a deputy arrived and cuffed the suspect.
Deputies investigating the arrest recognized Benson from what Strovink described as "an established criminal history."
In June 2007 that Benson was caught doing the same thing at Mount Scott Community Center.
At that time a witness saw him watching girls changing for swim lessons.
He was wearing a bra and refused to turn and face the witness.
He had previously been convicted and served time for a 1994 conviction for child sexual abuse.
He was to have no direct contact with children.
Since he had not actually touched the girls at Mount Scott, he was charged with invasion of privacy and misuse of a public restroom.
He made bail just hours after that incident.