Police: Man exposes self to girl in Ocala store


Published: Thursday, January 1, 2009 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, January 1, 2009 at 12:20 a.m.

OCALA — A man allegedly caught following a 10-year-old girl and touching himself in a children’s section of a Bealls Outlet store in Ocala was arrested on Monday.

Justin Shuman, 35, was charged with indecent exposure with a lewd and lascivious act in the presence of a person under 16, according to Ocala police.

He made his first court appearance via video link from the Marion County Jail on Tuesday and told County Judge Sarah Ritterhoff Williams that he is formerly from Marion County but had been living in South Carolina. Shuman, who is married without children, said he lost his job in October and has no savings.

Ritterhoff Williams set his bail at $16,000, appointed a public defender and ordered that he have no contact with children.

On Monday, Shuman reportedly told a police officer that what he did was “stupid” and that he went to the children’s section because the kids are young and wouldn’t understand what he was doing.

A security video from Bealls Outlet on SW 27th Avenue shows a man following the girl throughout the store. Police were called to the store and an officer saw him standing about three feet from the girl and moving his hands in the area of his genitals, according to a police report.

Once Shuman saw the officer, he reportedly began to walk away and tried to hide. The officer detained him as Shuman tried to zip his pants.

The officer also briefly spoke with the distraught girl, who said she saw Shuman’s hand moving back and forth and that a napkin covered the area.

Shuman, who apparently has no prior criminal record, made no comment following his first court appearance Tuesday.

Reader comments posted to this article may be published in our print edition. All rights reserved. This copyrighted material may not be re-published without permission. Links are encouraged.

Comments are currently unavailable on this article

▲ Return to Top