by: Richard Thompson Updated:
TUMWATER, Wash. - A sex offender was tackled by a parent and arrested Thursday at the Tumwater Fred Meyer after allegedly taking pictures of children there and another nearby store, police said.
The incident started about 4:45 p.m. at the Walmart when officers responded to a voyeurism complaint. Police said the suspect, Randy Smith, left by the time they arrived.
The mother of a 6-year-old girl reported that he was taking pictures of her daughter while they were shopping, and the mother reported the information to employees. Walmart staff looked at the store's surveillance video and saw Smith following the girl while taking cellphone camera photos, police said.
During the Walmart investigation, police were dispatched to a disturbance at the Fred Meyer next door.
A father reported seeing Smith take a picture of his 6-year-old daughter under a dressing room door as she tried on swimming suits. He and another customer tackled the 54-year-old and held him until police arrived.
Another customer learned Smith had been confronted by his daughter for allegedly taking pictures of her infant son in his stroller.
Smith, who has two skull tattoos and has to register as a sex offender because of his child rape conviction, was booked into the Thurston County Jail for investigation of voyeurism. He is listed as a transient in the sex offender database.
KIRO 7 is looking into the crime that put Smith behind bars in 1990. We’ll have more for you on Eyewitness News at 5 p.m.