Haverhill man charged with stalking girl
HAVERHILL, Mass. (WHDH) -- A man police say stalked a mother and her 7-year-old daughter around a Haverhill Market Basket and took a cellphone picture under the girl's skirt was arraigned Thursday.
Police arrested 38-year-old Stephen Hager of Haverhill on Wednesday. He was charged with attempted indecent assault and battery on a person under 14. His bail was set at $10,000. He is required to wear a GPS monitoring system and ordered under house arrest.
Police say the man followed the mother and daughter around the store on Monday afternoon. When the mother turned to grab something off the shelf, police said Hager used his camera phone to take a picture of the girl.
“He followed them for 26 minutes. It seemed he had intent this is what he wanted to do and he eventually did it,” said Lt. Robert Pistone of the Haverhill Police Department.
Surveillance video captured Hager in the act.
After the photo was taken, the girl’s mother asked Hager what he was doing and if he had touched her daughter. Hager responded by saying he was sorry and walking away.
The girl's mother told store management, who informed police.
Hager was arrested Wednesday night after police distributed photos of him. His home was also searched. Police said they got an anonymous tip and Hager’s mother and brother, who he lives with, both identified him in the video.
Police way when they confronted Hager he admitted to going to the Market Basket, bending down, and holding the phone underneath the girl’s skit. However, he said he had deleted the picture in the ride between his house and the police department.
Police said Hager also admitted to photographing underage girls before.
Prosecutors said they still need to analyze other electronic devices found inside Hager’s home.