• Sex offender accused of peeping captured after chase, fight with police

    By: Greg Suskin


    ROCK HILL, S.C. - A registered sex offender that police once called a menace to society is in jail once again, charged with peeping, a crime he has been convicted of in the past.

    Rock Hill police said that last week, 30-year-old Travis Cousar was on South Spruce Street repeatedly tapping on a woman's window. She went to the front door and made eye contact with Cousar, according to police.

    He was arrested at his mother's home late Wednesday, but it did not happen peacefully.

    Police said Cousar's family would not let them into the house when they arrived on Spruce Street.

    Then, as officers began to arrive in large numbers, a neighbor used a cellphone to shoot video of Cousar kicking out a vent on an attic window where he was hiding. He jumped 12 feet to the ground and ran from officers.

    After the foot chase, the same video also shows Cousar wrestling with officers as they tried to arrest him and get him into a police SUV.

    Police said Cousar has a long history of peeping and indecent exposure, though he's only been convicted of one prior offense.

    Cousar had just been released from prison in late May. He pleaded guilty and was sentenced in 2010 to two years in prison for another peeping incident as well as assault on a officer and throwing bodily fluids on an officer.

    Back then, Rock Hill police had named Cousar as a suspect in 20 peeping and indecent exposure cases from 2008 to 2010. 

    Solicitor Kevin Brackett said most of the cases involved a victim briefly seeing a man outside a window, but not being able to positively identify him.

    Prosecutors could only prove one of those cases in court.

    The conviction came from a case on Neville Street, where police said Cousar left fingerprints behind on an air conditioning unit he had climbed on to look into someone's window.

    He was later caught wearing clothes that matched the victim's description and riding the bicycle she had seen.

    His mother, Gwen June, said her son is innocent all of the crimes of which he's accused. She claimed someone who looks like her son has committed all the crimes and accused police of harassing her family.

    June said her son jumped from her window and ran on Wednesday because he was scared.

    "He ran because he says he was running for his life because he knew what the police were going to do to him. And yes, he was afraid. I don't blame him because every time you turn around, you have to look out behind your back because the police are after you for everything," she said.

    If Cousar is convicted a second time of peeping, it would be a felony offense that could put him in prison for up to five years.

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