Police: Man charged with stalking for trying to lure teens into car

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Memphis police say they’ve caught the man who’s been trying to lure young girls into his car.

Jeremy Woodard, 32, was arrested Friday night and charged with four counts of stalking.

Police say he’s the same man Shelby County school officials sent out an alert about earlier this week.

Woodard has a long, disturbing criminal history, and neighbors said Saturday that they think he’s connected to another case from December.

Court records show that earlier this month, Woodard followed the same 17-year-old girl twice in less than a week as she walked to Hamilton High School.

She told police he asked her where she was headed to and circled around her, but she ignored him, then called 911 and told school officials.

The teen described that white car to police and remembered part of the man's plate number – 5C7 – the same first three characters WREG found on Woodard’s car Saturday, parked in his driveway.

A woman, who said she’s Woodard's grandmother, told WREG he hasn’t done anything wrong and that police are framing him.

"You’re saying he’s innocent?" we asked.

"Yes!" she said.

But Woodard is also charged with stalking a young girl as she walked home from school in September, flashing hundred dollar bills at her and asking if she was "trying to make some money," according to an arrest affidavit.

That girl told police she thought he was going to pull her into his car.

One neighbor tells WREG that he's heard rumors about Woodard, but doesn't know if they're true.

"As far as I know, he’s a good fella," said Wardell Turner. "Then with the girls and everything, I don’t know anything about that, but I’ve been hearing this and that.”

Woodard has also been arrested several times for trying to pay prostitutes for sex, and was even caught by police having sex with a prostitute outside in the middle of the afternoon, court records show.

"Everybody’s got their secrets," Turner said.

In 2015, Woodard was arrested after police say he offered a teen girl a ride home, then trapped her in his truck and attacked her.

In December, police launched a search for a man they say was driving around Cooper Young and Central Gardens flashing women. In that case, investigators released a surveillance photo of a white Kia Optima, which looks very similar to Woodard’s.

One neighbor told WREG off camera that she was so convinced it was him, she sent a photo of Woodard’s car to Crime Stoppers.

He hasn’t been charged in that case, and still, his grandmother insists that regardless of his creepy criminal past, police have the wrong guy.

Woodard is charged with two counts of stalking for this latest case and two counts of stalking from the September case. He’ll be in court Monday morning.


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