Multiple Wake County women reached out to CBS 17 saying a man approached them while they were out running errands, offering them quick cash to come over his place and take sexually suggestive photos and videos.
All of these women describe these encounters as creepy and they all say they all approached by a man who goes by the name “Bernard.”
“It makes me feel gross,” said Shannon, who did not want to use her last name. “I mean I came home and my anxiety was through the roof. My heart was pounding.”
The women said the man usually approaches women while they’re shopping at grocery stores or walking to their cars. They say the man is usually looking for plus-sized women willing to do some questionable things on camera.
Shannon described the first encounter with Bernard.
“Put his card in my face, said some kind of thing like, ‘You’re beautiful, you’re sexy. I’m a photographer. I’d love to take photos of you at my house. I have a studio set up’,” Shannon said.
Shannon did not want to show her face.
Another woman, Mel, also did not want to show her face or use her last name. She said the man stopped her twice. Both times at her job at a beauty supply store in north Raleigh.
“It’s almost like paralyzing in a sense,” said Mel. “It kind of feels like especially in 2018 it almost feels like women have a direct target on their backs.”
Another woman who works with at the same beauty supply store says she emailed Bernard to see what he had to say. She says he asked her to do fetish work and sexual things with him on camera.
“We just started to unpack a lot more really grimy details about this person,” Mel said.
Shannon says Bernard approached her three more times after that. The most recent incident happened at the Publix in Wake Forest Sunday.
“He tried to hand me a card that said ‘get paid to play dress up, easy money’,” Shannon said.
Shannon reported the man to the police.
“They basically were like ‘sorry we can’t do anything.’ It’s kind of like well he hasn’t technically broken the law yet, but what about us women who don’t feel safe,” said Shannon.
CBS 17 reached out to local law enforcement. They say in situations like these its best to skip social media and call the police right away.
“I feel like I’m gonna have to be constantly looking over my shoulder,” Shannon said.
CBS 17’s Kelly Kennedy spoke with Bernard over the phone. He denied a request to go on camera, but he claims he is now out of the business.
He said he previously worked for a Swedish company called “Big and Busty.”
Kennedy asked him if he had approached women at grocery stores or in parking lots. He admitted he had, but said he was no longer scouting.
Bernard also said he apologized if he made anyone feel uncomfortable, but maintains he did not do anything illegal.