MIAMI (CBS4) – Like a hunter stalking his prey, Hialeah Police say videos captured from the cell phone of a retired chiropractor show Jonathan Davis seeking out young girls under the age of 12 to videotape.
Likewise, police say the cell phone audio recordings show a man desperate for the attention of the children, using catcalls and laughter to entice them and win their trust.
All the while, police say Davis touched himself inappropriately, using a ruse that he was “itchy” to elicit help from the youths.
Hialeah Police provided edited surveillance video and cell phone audio to CBS4 News of Davis in a Burlington Coat Factory in Hialeah.
Detective Felix Mendigutia said the cell phone videos show Davis in numerous South Florida stores approaching and videotaping children.
“This is a guy whose brazen,” said Det. Mendigutia. “He’s fearless. He’s not afraid to get caught.”
Hialeah Police said the case began because an alert security guard at the Burlington Coat Factory noticed Davis recording children in the store at the end of March. The surveillance video shows store cameras zooming in and out on Davis as he roamed the store.
Mendigutia says Davis got just inches away from some children who were with their parents.
“In some cases I could actually see that a parent was holding a child by the hand,” Mendigutia said. “In some cases the parent was 5 feet from their child.”
Police say Davis appeared to be on the prowl, crouching down in store aisles and hiding behind merchandise — all in an effort to surreptitiously take video of girls as young 5 years old, while touching himself.
“You can see in the children’s eyes when they would first look up at him and then they would look down in the area in the lower part of his body,” Mendigutia said.
And the audio recordings add another creepy element to this case. Police say Davis used a series of catcalls to get the kids’ attention — making a “psst” noise and saying “Ouch!”
Investigators say most kids turned around to see Davis itching his private parts. Police say some children who were away from their parents or guardian spoke to him at length.
Police say the cell phone audio shows Davis telling one child, “You can’t see what I’m hiding.” And telling another one, “You can’t have a butt that nice when you’re 8.”
Police say Davis even tried to get the girls to go with him to a different part of the store.
“He’s saying things like ‘Where’s the toy section? I have a little niece. Can you help find this? What size shoe are you?,” Mendigutia said.
Investigators do not believe any children went with Davis but they continue to investigate the case.
Police do believe Davis did this at numerous stores. Davis is charged with lewd and lascivious at this Kmart in Hollywood.
Davis he is free on bond and Detective Mendigutia is not happy about it.
“I don’t feel comfortable with the fact that he’s out on bond and I’m very concerned for the children in our society,” Mendigutia said.
After the security guard noticed Davis in Hialeah, a police officer confiscated his phone. Police say Davis contacted the officer through email to apologize.
“He acknowledges that he has an issue and that he’s gonna do something about it,” Mendigutia said. “He’s gonna get help for it.”
Days later, after obtaining a search warrant, polices say they found 80 videos on Davis’ phone.
Police say this case again proves that parents must supervise their children at all times. Mendigutia told CBS 4 News that the children who were with their parents were only recorded and did not interact with Davis.
“The parents that were close to their kids, he couldn’t go that next step,” Mendigutia said. “The parent was too close by. So staying close to your children is always going to be the safest thing to do.”
According to the clerk’s office in Iredell County in North Carolina, Davis pleaded no contest to three counts of indecent exposure in 2007. A copy of a police report reveals that Davis was accused of exposing himself to several people – including a 15-year-old — at a park. The clerk’s office tells CBS 4 that Davis was sentenced to 2 years of supervised probation, told to pay court costs and ordered to stay out of parks and playgrounds.
If you believe your child may have encountered Davis, call Hialeah Police at (305) 863-5353.