AUSTIN (KXAN) — Police arrested an Austin man accused of stealing 57 pairs of women’s underwear from a laundry room at St. Edward’s University, according to an arrest affidavit.
Last week officers took Jacob Davidson, 27, into custody following a traffic stop. During the stop officers found two wigs and the underwear inside Davidson’s car.
On Oct. 1, St. Edward’s police received a report of theft from the Community Building One laundry room. A victim told police a man was wandering near the laundry room and “thought it was strange because he didn’t have any clothing with him.”
A day later another victim told police she too was missing undergarments from the laundry room. She said she saw a white man in his late 20s wandering near the laundry room. She reported he left in a small, white car.
“Everyone was like, I know I’m missing this, I’m missing this, and so we were like, well it has to be one person,” said Sophmore Caroline Kirschner.
Caroline Kirschner and Faith Golz are both on the soccer team and both had underwear taken. Several other women on St. Edward’s sports teams also reported missing bras and underwear.
Golz took a picture of a man believed to be Davidson in a wig and women’s clothing after a friend saw him leaving the laundry room.
“She was like, ‘Faith there he is, there’s the man who’s been stealing our underwear,’ and I looked and all I saw what I thought was a girl walking away,” Golz said.
A third victim came forward to police to report missing undergarments on Oct. 2, police say.
The university already had keyless locks on laundry doors, but the police department added a camera as well.
“When we got the first reports we added quickly a game camera in the area to catch photos of people coming in and out of that room,” St. Edward’s Police Chief Homer Huerta said.
A week after the first three reports, Golz told police that her friend saw the suspect climbing through the window of the laundry room.
On Oct. 14, Golz spotted the suspect wearing a long, brown-haired wig at the laundry room again. She told police the man had already left, but was driving a white hatchback car.
The game camera captured several photographs of the suspect walking back and forth from his car to the building. The man was unable to get inside the building, the affidavit says.
Later that day a man, matching the suspect’s description, drove past a St. Edward’s University police officer heading toward the same building and wearing a woman’s wig. The officer pulled him over and identified the man as Davidson.
Police say two victims were able to identify several of the undergarments found in Davidson’s car.
Davidson was arrested on burglary charges. He has bonded out of Travis County Jail.
“There was like a big celebration from the soccer team and volleyball team together, we were like, ‘the panty thief has been caught,'” Kirschner said.