Calese Crowder, 37, of Glendale, Calif., was arrested again Aug. 17, 2023 by Glendale Police Department after failing to register as a sex offender. Burbank Police Department suspects he may have been involved in stalking and sniffing women at the Barnes and Nobel Bookstore in Burbank in the previous week. (Courtesy of Glendale Police Department)
A Glendale man with a lengthy record of peeping into bedroom windows and burglarizing homes when families were sleeping was arrested again Aug. 17 after serving only one day of a 30-day sentence.
In addition to an arrest Aug. 11 for not registering as a sex offender, Calese Crowder, 37, of Glendale, is also now suspected of stalking and sniffing women in the Barnes and Nobel bookstore in the neighboring city of Burbank. He has been released at least nine times under Los Angeles County’s COVID-19-era zero-cash bail policy
since 2021, according to authorities.
taken by TikTok influencer Michaela Witter Aug. 7 showed a man stalking her at the bookstore in Burbank. At one point, the man appeared to crawl on the floor and sniff under her dress.
Ms. Witter reported the incident to a bookstore employee. Burbank police suspect the man is Mr. Crowder, according to a spokesman.
“Initially hearing that he was released my heart dropped,” Ms. Witter told The Epoch Times in an email. “I was extremely afraid for my own safety as well as all of the women and children he has harassed, stalked or violated or will in the future because nothing is being done about it. It was almost a slap in the face because our safety and our lives are not taken seriously at all.”
Ms. Witter additionally said she doesn’t have any hope that Mr. Crowder will be detained for long.
A Barnes and Noble Booksellers store in Pittsburgh on Aug. 31, 2017. (Gene J. Puskar/AP)
“He has been doing this for over 13 years and will continue to do this until he does something worse,” she added. “It’s terrifying that there are no laws that protect us from people like this.”
Burbank detectives are continuing to investigate the incident, according to Sgt. Stephen Turner, spokesman for the department.
“Yes, we believe it is the same person that Glendale [Police Department] has arrested,” Mr. Turner told The Epoch Times. “Detectives will be speaking with other potential victims to confirm it is the same person they encountered.”
In the latest incident, Mr. Crowder was arrested in Glendale on a warrant in connection to the report of a man peeping into a family’s residence when they were home with their children five days earlier.
During his Aug. 14 arraignment, Mr. Crowder pleaded no contest to the charges and was sentenced to jail for 60 days. The judge also ordered
him to complete 52 weeks of a sexual impulse rehabilitation program and register as a sex offender, according to police and news reports.
During the court hearing, prosecutors said Mr. Crowder admitted to enjoying watching women and was once caught pleasuring himself while following a woman walking her dog, according to KTLA news
He was released Aug. 16 because of overcrowding, according to news reports. The Glendale Police Department did not return requests for comment to confirm that information.
Once released, Glendale police arrested Mr. Crowder again Aug. 17 after he failed to register as a sex offender in the city. He remained in custody Friday, Aug. 18, at the Glendale City Jail on a $20,000 bail, according to jail staff, and was expected to be arraigned in court later that day.
Revolving Door Policy
Mr. Crowder’s lengthy arrest record includes serving a prison sentence and several arrests dating back 12 years in Glendale, according to police.
In 2011, he was arrested for a series of peeping reports and burglarizing houses when residents were home. As a result, he was convicted and sentenced to eight years in prison, Glendale police said in a release
Then, since 2020 he has been arrested more than seven times, offered no cash bail, and released shortly after in all cases except for his last arrest in January, when he was held for two months and released in March.
Victims ‘Don’t Feel Safe’
News of the latest alleged incident involving Mr. Crowder at the Burbank bookstore sent shockwaves throughout the Glendale-Burbank area. Women who say they have been affected by the suspect have reached out to Ms. Witter, she said.
“The women I have talked to who have also been affected by Calese Crowder have [post-traumatic stress disorder] or just don’t feel safe going anywhere by themselves,” she said. “It’s not fair that we have to live our lives in fear because the justice system won’t protect us.”
She said authorities are responsible if anything worse happens to someone if he is once again released with no accountability.
“They need to get him the help he needs and keep him somewhere where he can’t harm anyone else,” she said.