Two local women told Local 4 News that they were verbally harrassed and followed by a man at the Walmart on Elmore Avenue in Davenport last week.
“Right now thinking about it, I’m shaky,” Misti Jaurigue said.
Jaurigue says that the man followed her while she was shopping from a distance. She tried to lose him, but saw him come out of the store as she was leaving. He followed her to her car and banged on the windows to get her attention. She was able to drive away, and stay safe.
“If my truck had not been unlocked, running and waiting for me, I don’t what would have happened. I don’t know if he would have done something,” Jaurigue said. “In my mind, he was trying to get me. And, it really freaked me out.”
Jaime Henderkott was shopping at the same location last week when she was approached not once, but twice by two men, who she says came together in a dark-colored pickup truck.
“I noticed a truck pull up right next to me, and started trying to get my attention,” she said. “I just kept walking. When I got inside there was another gentleman who came up to me trying to talk to me and I just kept walking. After that, I just felt really uneasy. Kept checking over my shoulder.”
When she finished shopping, she asked an employee to walk her back out to her car. She says the men were still in their truck by her car when she left the store, and felt safer with someone accompanying her.
Sergeant Mark Berger, the Crime Prevention Unit Supervisor with Davenport Police, said it’s important to be aware of your surroundings when running errands by yourself.
“As you get out of your vehicle, obviously lock the car immediately, walk from point A to point B, get there quickly. Keep your head on a swivel, be looking around. You need to observe everything that is going on,” he said.
If you are being followed in the a store, Berger said you should not hesitate to ask for help.
“Let someone know, and then they can call 911,” Berger said. “Either they are going to leave or we can identify them and we can resolve what’s going on. So, don’t hesitate to call.”
Both women posted their stories on Facebook. Henderkott’s post has been shared over two thousand times since she posted it last week, and hopes that her story will help other women be aware of situations like this one.
“I just overall want everyone to feel safe. We should all feel safe in the place that we grew up in and we live in,” she said. “I definitely just wanted to share it with my friends and everything just because I want them to be more aware.”
Jaurigue wants people to take these incidents seriously. “Something is going on,” she said.
If you or someone you know who has been followed or harrassed, contact the Davenport Police Department and file a report.