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Underwear pictures land man in lockup

July 12, 2011 12:15 am




Attention area women: Police say some of you might have unknowingly had pictures of your underwear taken while you were shopping.

Fredericksburg police spokeswoman Natatia Bledsoe said more than 40 such pictures were found during a recent search of a man's cellphone.

The investigation began July 2 when three women who were shopping at the Target in Central Park complained about a man who had invaded their personal space.

The first complained that she thought the man had tried to get into her purse, but she left the store before police could talk to her.

A short time later, two other women reported to store security that they believed a man had reached under their skirts and taken pictures.

A loss-prevention officer called police and followed the man out of the parking lot. A city officer stopped the man a short time later in front of the former Shoppers Food Warehouse.

Bledsoe said the man agreed to let the officer examine his phone, and the first picture showed showed a woman's thighs, buttocks and underwear. Police believe the picture was taken in Target.

The man was also later found on the store surveillance camera taking a picture of the victim, police said.

Russell Hailstalk, 40, of Spotsylvania County was charged with unlawful photographing, a misdemeanor, and placed in the Rappahannock Regional Jail under a $1,500 bond.

Bledsoe said police got a search warrant for Hailstalk's phone and found numerous other pictures that appeared to have been taken from beneath women's skirts or dresses.

Police are asking any woman who may have noticed Hailstalk while shopping July 2 or earlier to contact Detective Carlos Reyes at 540/654-5919.

Hailstalk is described as 6 feet 1 inch tall and 280 pounds. He has a thick mustache and goatee.

Keith Epps: 540/374-5404

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