Police: 'Hilltop Creeper' Reports Now Total 15


Police said that the man dubbed the "Hilltop Creeper" struck three times overnight Wednesday.

Police said that the man has struck 15 times, including twice at one home. The man is accused of sneaking into homes, lurking over women and in many cases, touching them while they sleep.

Lisa Sharp said that she awoke to find the man standing at the foot of her bed around 3:30 a.m.

"It was really frightening to have somebody stand over you," Sharp said.

Sharp said that when she told the man to leave her Wrexham Avenue home, and he walked out casually.

"I screamed and told him to get out of my house," Sharp said. "He just casually walked on, like he belonged or something."

Police took two other reports overnight Wednesday, one on Highland Avenue and one on South Eureka.

A woman named Nicole, who did not want to be identified by her last name, said that she woke up to a person standing over her. She said that the man was kneeling and walking out of her room.

“I was sleeping and I woke up startled because I saw like a shadow or a person standing over me and walking out of my room already,” Nicole said.

Authorities said that while investigating the Highland Avenue incident on Wednesday, a woman said that the man had appeared in her bedroom two months earlier, but she did not report it.

Investigators said that makes 15 known appearances of the Hilltop Creeper at 14 locations.

The incidents began in December and have been concentrated on the west side in the Hilltop and Franklinton neighborhoods.

Police were working to determine if the crimes are the act of one person. Investigators were not sure why the creeper or creepers chose the Hilltop area and said that he could be familiar with the area.

“We have not excluded the possibility that there are multiple offenders out there, but having three incidents in this short of a time, in this geographic area, lends itself a little more to we have one offender who is responsible for these three,” said Columbus police Sgt. David Pelphrey.

Police said that DNA was not found at the crime scenes, but they were hoping fingerprints could lead them to a suspect. Fingerprints were collected from all 14 locations, and investigators now have a dedicated latent print examiner working the case.

Police said that they also would have non-uniform patrols in the neighborhood and that residents should have a plan in place to keep themselves safe.

Anyone with information should call the Sexual Assault Unit Tip Line at 614-645-2438.

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