CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - A man is facing charges after police say a witness reportedly saw him sexually assaulting two young girls at a park and immediately called 911.
According to police, it happened Sunday night along the 1400-block of Armory Drive at Independence Park, in Charlotte's Elizabeth neighborhood. The park is located between an elementary school and a preschool.
"The kids from the school play all throughout the park," said Kristen Davis, who works nearby. "It is very troubling. It is a reminder that you have to be very mindful and knowledgeable about who your kids are with."
The witness told police he saw a man, later identified as 43-year-old Ivan Dawkins, sexually assaulting two young girls. When police arrived they found Dawkins and the girls - ages 7 and 9 - nearby.
"I think anytime you have someone that can stop an assault, especially of a child, that is a very fortunate situation," said Davis.
Detectives say at the time of the assault the young girls were in Dawkins' care.
He was arrested and charged with two counts of indecent liberties with a child and statutory sex offense with a child. He's being held in the Mecklenburg County Jail under a $30,000 bond.
"I used to bring my granddaughter down here to play," said Katharyn Horne, who lives nearby. "There is the Methodist church on Hawthorne. There is a Presbyterian church over there. There is the Episcopal church here."
Dawkins is expected to appear in court on Tuesday.
Anyone with information concerning this case or the suspect is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 704-334-1600.