Residents of the Beverly Plaza Apartments, which is just over a mile from campus, are closing their windows and drawing their blinds due to a “peeping Tom” who has been making inappropriate comments toward women that live at the complex.
Since the beginning of the year, the Long Beach Police Department has received reports of the peeping Tom, colloquially called the “Beverly Prowler,” looking through windows between the hours of 9:50 p.m. and 6:30 a.m.
Vivienne Kau, a fourth-year industrial design major at CSULB has been personally impacted by the actions of the Beverly Prowler, and she said that it makes her angry that she can’t feel safe in her own apartment anymore
“I’ve become more aware of my surroundings, but at the same time I find it annoying to keep having to look over my shoulder or having to act differently in my own restroom and that I don’t feel as comfortable in my living situation,” she said.
Kau came home late and was getting ready for bed when she heard him make comments through the window. She said she’s frustrated she has to adjust her daily life to avoid a “creeper” that has been known about since January.
“You always hear about it and I wasn’t really concerned and now that it happened to me I’m like, ‘Wow, it really is a thing,’” Kau said.
According to Lucinda Lucero, the leasing manager for the apartment complex, there are police patrolling the area as well as the apartment’s own security team.
“There’s nothing we can do other than keep our courtesy patrol aware and keep the residents aware,” Lucero said.
Lucero said though this has been an ongoing problem, there was a period of time when the Beverly Prowler left. He returned at the end of September, according to reports that Lucero has heard of.
“Maybe they know we’re aware of the situation, so they left,” she said.
The biggest struggle of the investigation is residents not reporting incidents or reporting days late, according to Lucero. Both her and LBPD officials said if residents experience something they should call 9-1-1 or the tip number 562-435-6711 immediately.
Kau’s roommate Hetvi Babaria, a second-year food science major, said her perspective on safety has shifted since the reports have started.
“I’m already concerned about my safety and this issue is still fresh and you can’t ask for company all the time,” Babaria said.
Though Barbaria hasn’t been the target of any inappropriate comments, she said that it’s still scary to be a college student on her own when her community is going through something like this.
Both she and Kau said that they hope other women in Long Beach don’t look at this as a reason to be worried about their safety. Though they did say that this has helped them think about their own security more seriously.
“Be more aware of your surroundings and not leave things to [the] benefit of the doubt like leaving your door unlocked,” Kau said. “At the same time, I don’t think you should be paranoid and let these situations psych you out of living your life.”
LBPD has released descriptions of two male suspects:
- White or light-skinned Latino
- 30 to 35 years old
- Around 5 foot 7 inches tall
- A dark hoodie and sweatpants
- A high-pitched voice
One of the suspects is Fredrick Terrence Harvey who is currently wanted on a parole violation for a separate incident that happened in 2018.
Barbaria said she hopes the police find the Beverly Prowler soon so she can feel safe at home again.
“My parents were against me moving out of the dorms initially so I don’t even want to tell them about this because it will make them doubt even more,” Barbaria said. “Here, there [are] so many people around you but things still happen. You feel targeted because this is happening to this community in particular so this…feels targeted.”
Paula Kiley, multimedia managing editor, contributed to this article.