SAN DIEGO — A man trailed a woman to her home near San Diego State University and tried to follow her inside last month, according to police — now officials are hoping photos will help identify the man.
The pictures were released for the first time in a San Diego Police Department news release Thursday. They show a man standing and then sitting in the backyard of a home on Mary Lane on April 27, according to SDPD.
Investigators say the man followed the woman as she walked to the home, just south of Montezuma Road near College Avenue. He walked into the backyard behind the woman, who went inside and locked the door.
The man stayed in the backyard for about 15 minutes, according to police, peering through windows and even trying to open several doors to the home before leaving. The woman and several roommates watched from inside the house until he finally walked away.
Much of the College Area neighborhood surrounding the university caters to student housing, and the woman’s home is just a couple blocks away from several campus buildings, but officials did not say whether she or her roommates had any ties to San Diego State.
Students who spoke to FOX 5 Thursday evening said they recognized the man from the photos, having seen him hanging around campus recently.
“I have seen him like in the last week or so. I wouldn’t say I’ve seen him much before,” said Kailey Quezada.
“I’ve seen him too, a couple times around the (student) union,” added Lauren Payne.
The students told FOX 5 it was far from their first reminder to stay vigilant around town.
“As females we just have to take the extra precautions necessary to keep ourselves safe, but also make sure that our friends are safe and that our friends get home,” Quezada said.
Authorities referred to the man as a “prowler.” Officials sometimes use the term “hot prowl” to describe a break-in or attempted break-in that occurs while people are home.
Anyone with information about the man was urged to call San Diego police at 619-531-2000 or San Diego County Crime Stoppers at 888-580-8477.
FOX 5’s Jaime Chambers contributed to this report.