Local

Repeat offender arrested near children in Clovis

Thursday, March 28, 2013

A man who has been arrested at least 23 times since last June is back in custody after he was arrested in a Clovis neighborhood Thursday.

An alert parent recognized Michael Anthony Wyatt walking down the street with two children by his side and called police. The parents said he was especially alarmed because the man was walking toward a field filled with children hunting for Easter eggs. "My stomach just dropped. It reminded me of an image you guys had on your news broadcast," said Ryan Pottorff of Clovis.

Pottorff's instincts were right. Michael Anthony Wyatt was arrested at the scene by Clovis police for a parole violation. Pottorff said Wyatt had condoms and lubricant in his possession at the time of his arrest. "I'm thinking of those little kids and I see this guy walking toward that direction he's going and I'm thinking, I've got to at least attempt to see if this is the guy," said Pottorff.

Wyatt is a convicted felon and on parole for an assault charge. But it's his sexually charged crimes that are particularly concerning to parents. Wyatt has now been arrested at least two dozen times for offenses that include sexual battery on a woman at a gas station and committing a lewd act in front of a Central Fresno apartment complex. Just last month, Wyatt was arrested on the Buchanan High School campus, where he walked onto campus uninvited.

Many of Wyatt's arrests are for parole violations -- but because of prison realignment and overcrowding, the violations aren't enough to keep him in the Fresno County jail for long. That's leaving parents like Pottorff on edge. "The sad thing is, he'll probably be out tomorrow. And it's going to take a big situation to happen to one of my kids or some of these kids that live in the Buchanan area to get everyone's attention," said Pottorff.

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crimetracker, sex crimes, clovis, fresno county, fresno, local, amanda perez
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