SAN MARCOS, TEXAS - A Texas State student said a man tried to lure her into his car and exposed himself to her at the Purgatory Creek Park parking lot.
"I can’t believe it happened," said Jacqueline Yanez, as she returned to the park Thursday afternoon.
Yanez said she came to the trails with a friend Tuesday afternoon, and they finished up around 3:30. As she was walking back to her car, she heard a voice trying to get her attention. After she looked around, she saw a man in a Jeep parked right next to her car waving at her. Initially thinking he was just being friendly, she waved back.
"Then I heard a honk, because I wasn't looking at that point and he said, 'hey, can you come here for a second?' And I was like, 'what,'" Yanez recalled.
The man persisted, and then motioned to Yanez to look down.
"He was half naked, touching himself and I kind of like looked back and was like, 'what the hell are you doing?' And he started laughing at me," said Yanez.
Yanez quickly opened her car door and got in.
"He was like, 'no, get in the car, come here.' He was still laughing at me, but he was being really stern about it. Like, 'you need to come back,'" Yanez explained.
Once in her car, she sped out of the lot and called police. By the time they arrived, they did not locate the alleged vehicle or individual involved.
After escaping the situation, Yanez posted about the incident on Twitter, where another user shared a similar experience in the area.
"All of this stuff is happening with sexual harassment. I like to talk about these things, and it’s crazy that it happened to me because I totally would be the one to be like, ‘yeah, I want to tell everyone. Everyone needs to know. Everyone needs to stick together,'" said Yanez, adding everybody should be concerned by the reports.
For years, she has come to these trails alone, finding comfort in the solitude of the expansive area. Now, she's rethinking if she'll continue to do so.
"I kind of feel uneasy. I definitely know I don’t want to come here by myself. That’s why I’m being a little bit more cautious, actually being aware of my surroundings and what’s happening because he could have come out of his car. I didn’t know anyone was here. I thought I was alone," said Yanez.
The incident happened in the middle of the afternoon, just feet away from the intersection of Hunter Street and Wonder World Drive, a heavily-trafficked area.
"I just can’t believe it happened in broad daylight. It was like three in the afternoon. It was a nice day, and there were so many people out It’s just weird that ... he had to be waiting for the perfect moment. And that was the perfect moment. It was just me. My friend just drove off, and there was like no one in this parking lot. So it was just like shocking. Couldn’t believe my eyes it was happening," said Yanez.
A San Marcos city spokesman told KVUE that all parks and green spaces are periodically patrolled by park rangers. During the busy season, San Marcos police officers assist with patrols at the river parks. If you ever feel unsafe, call police.
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