OCEAN CITY, N.J. (CBS) — A viral Instagram account has the Cape May County Prosecutor’s Office investigating allegations of sexual misconduct involving members of the Ocean City Beach Patrol.
According to Ocean City officials, the prosecutor’s office was made aware of the account on Wednesday, April 14, the same day it was created. By 8 p.m. on Friday, “OCBP_Predators” had earned over 3,300 followers.READ MORE: Police: Co-Worker Naheem Williamson Arrested In Tyree Roundtree's Murder Over $1,500 In Construction Wages
On it, over 100 anonymous submissions have been shared using blocks of text, detailing allegations of predatory sexual misconduct at the hands of lifeguards on the Ocean City Beach Patrol.
Several of the allegations came from those identifying as former Beach Patrol members who described sexual harassment on the job.
In response, Ocean City Mayor Jay Gillian said that he has directed the city’s fire chief to build on existing policies so that employees feel safe in coming forward, adding, “I want to continue to make sure all our city team members work in a safe environment.”READ MORE: AP Source: CDC To Ease Up Guidance On Indoor Mask-Wearing For Fully Vaccinated People
The city added that it “has strict sexual harassment policies and procedures in place and acts immediately on every reported complaint.”
Some of the app-based allegations came from those claiming to have been minors when they were allegedly targeted on the beach or at parties hosted by much older guards.
Several submissions alleged sexual assault.
The Ocean City Beach Patrol referred to the city’s statement on the matter.MORE NEWS: Portion Of Kelly Drive To Close Friday Morning Until Saturday Evening For Stotesbury Regatta
Investigators urge anyone with information or who feel that they may have been victimized to contact the prosecutor’s office at 609-465-1135, report it anonymously through the Cape May County Sheriff’s Tip Line, or call Cape May County Crime Stoppers at 609-889-3597.