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SCHERERVILLE — A woman called police after a man allegedly parked next to her and began masturbating in the Walmart parking lot, police said.

When the officer approached the man, he claimed he was just "checking" himself, according to police reports.

At 12:27 p.m. on Nov. 30, officers were called to the Walmart parking lot on U.S. 41 in Schererville in response to an alleged sex offense, Schererville Cmdr. Jeff Cook said.

A woman told police she saw a black Audi drive past her slowly as she parked her car in the front row. She then went inside the store to shop.

When she returned to the parking lot, the same black Audi was positioned next to the driver’s side of her vehicle, she told police.

As she walked to her car door, she saw a man sitting in the Audi through his driver’s side window. The man was breathing heavily, the police report alleged.

Schererville police Officer Justin Juarez, who arrived at the parking lot within a few seconds of dispatch, found the black Audi the woman described. The man inside was identified as Terrell Bahar, 26, of Dolton, police said.

Juarez observed Bahar was “dripping with sweat” and informed him of what the woman told police she saw.

Bahar then told Juarez, “I was just checking myself, and some lady, she saw me," police reports state.

Schererville police said Bahar gave two different accounts of what he was doing in the Walmart parking lot, neither of which could be verified.

Officers then saw surveillance video of the incident, which confirmed the woman’s story, Cook said.

Bahar was booked into the Lake County Jail on a charge of public indecency, a misdemeanor, court records show.

In a time when shoppers are out and about leading up to the holidays, police reiterated the phrase, “see something, say something.”

“We would like to remind the public to be aware of their surroundings and immediately report any suspicious activity to police,” Cook said.

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Night Crime/Breaking News Reporter

Anna Ortiz is the breaking news/crime reporter for The Times, covering crime, politics, courts, investigative news and more. She is a Region native and graduate of Ball State University with a major in journalism and minor in anthropology.