Memorial Park is a popular destination in Houston because of its scenic walking and biking paths. Unfortunately, visitors are getting more than they bargained for on one biking path.
At the end of the bike path, tucked behind the trees, is a place popular for one activity that the park doesn’t list in its visitor’s guide – masturbation.
“A guy will be just walking, or sitting in his car, and another guy will follow him and they disappear into the woods. That’s when our officer will follow and look for guys just standing around looking at leaves,” Vice Sgt. Tony Gracia told the Houston Chronicle. “It’s regular Joe Citizen on his lunch break and going to the area and masturbating.”
Professionally dressed men on their lunch hours are using the bike path as a place to masturbate in public, likely for the “thrill of getting caught.” If they are arrested, they face charges of indecent exposure, which is a Class B misdemeanor.
While the Houston Police Department has struggled to curtail the crimes, Garcia explained that authorities believe the men are communicating online to warn each other when arrests occur. The men then take a break from using their masturbation spot until police presence decreases again.
Over the past six months, six men have been arrested, compared with seven arrested in one day in 2013.
The park’s public masturbators come from all walks of life, including students, a pastor, a sheriff’s deputy and an FBI agent.
The next time you see a man in a suit walking down the bike path at lunch time, you may want to mosey on over to another spot.