An Avondale Estates, GA man recently turned himself in in connection with the case of a nine-year-old girl who was molested at a shopping mall. The victim’s mother reported the crime, which took place in North Point Mall in Alpharetta on August 4th. Mall surveillance cameras caught footage of the suspect on camera.
After the footage was aired on the news, Scott Carlton Taylor, 46, turned himself in. Taylor was also wanted in connection with a similar case that took place in a mall in Gwinnett County.
Atlanta’s Fox 5 reported that Taylor had a history of luring young girls in shopping malls. According to their report, he enticed children to follow him by telling them that he had a child their size and wanted to see if certain clothes fit. In the North Point Mall case, Taylor then inappropriately touched the victim on the outside of her clothes. Security cameras shows Taylor with a little girl’s dress over his arm, presumably a prop in his ruse to lure the victim.
“We observed a male subject who would methodically go look for a victim,” said Officer George Gordon of the Alpharetta Police Department.
Police are now trying to ascertain whether Taylor was involved in a similar case at the Mall of Georgia, and if he has perpetuated his crime at any other area malls.
The mother of the victim in the North Point Mall case said that the incident happened fast and that she was only a few feet away when her daughter was approached.
Unfortunately, according to Office Gordon, “If he did this in less than a minute, this isn’t his first time.”
This case is a sad reminder that child molesters can be creative when committing their crimes. According to police, Taylor knew the locations of security cameras and would lurk out of the cameras’ view for up to 45 minutes at a time before choosing a victim. That is why it’s imperative that parents watch children at all times when they are in public. An undercover news investigation in Cleveland, Ohio during the busy mall Christmas season uncovered several unsupervised children in a local mall. The Cleveland report also shows many child molesters living near local malls. While there are laws on the books in many states keeping convicted sex offenders from living near schools, churches, day cares and other places children frequent, I could find no law in any state that prevented child molesters from living near shopping malls.
The case also demonstrates the fact that there is no stereotypical child molester appearance. Taylor is clean and witnesses described him as well dressed. According to police, most people would not have been concerned if they saw him with their kids.
Though a concerned parent and good police work, this alleged child molester will be brought to justice before he can strike again.