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Man mistaken as sex offender near EHS

ELYRIA — A suspicious man at Elyria High School on Monday prompted school officials to call police after a female student mistook the man for a registered sex offender, police and school officials said.

The girl, 15, was walking to school at 7:40 a.m. and was near the courtyard approaching the cafeteria doors when she saw a man who she thought was a 23-year-old registered sex offender living at a Broad Street address, an Elyria police report said.

The girl reported the sighting to school officials, who looked at recorded footage from the school’s video surveillance cameras. The cameras failed to capture a “good facial picture” of the suspect, but the girl insisted it was the sex offender, the report said.

The girl said she knew the man because she and a friend had spent time with him about a month ago. Elyria police were already investigating the man because the girl’s parents reported her missing during the time she stayed with the sex offender, the report said.

Police obtained photos of the sex offender, and later determined that the girl had mistaken the man for another person who looks similar, the report said. 

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