The first time workers at Natick Outdoor Store allegedly found a pile of human feces in the parking lot, it was around Halloween and owner Henry Kanner thought it was a prank.
“Then it didn’t happen for a couple weeks,” Kanner said.
But then it allegedly happened again. And again. And again.
By December, employees were allegedly finding piles of feces in the parking lot regularly, accompanied by either a wipe or piece of toilet paper, and Kanner decided it was time to contact police. The person relieving themself could be seen in the store’s surveillance footage. It appeared to be the same person, Kanner said; they’d pull the SUV they were driving into the same spot and defecate in the same location at the same time of day, about 6:45 a.m.
It was Wednesday morning when police arrested Andrea F. Grocer, 51, of Ashland, at the scene, according to the MetroWest Daily News. She’s being charged with eight counts of vandalism, according to Natick District Court. Grocer was arraigned in court on Wednesday and released; her next court date is March 2.
She allegedly told the arresting officer, who was staked out in the lot, she has irritable bowel syndrome and was on her way to her nanny job, NBC10 Boston reports. She reportedly apologized and said it wouldn’t happen again after the officer noted the nearby public restrooms.
Kanner said he doesn’t recognize Grocer, noting that he thought perhaps it was someone who was “disgruntled” with the business.
For Kanner, he’s glad the defecation spree is, hopefully, over. An employee would have to go into the lot every time it happened and clean it up. In the colder months, a hose couldn’t be used, meaning someone would have to bring warm water outside to aid in the cleanup.
Leaving the feces in the lot wasn’t an option, he said. He didn’t want someone to accidentally step in it, or for a little kid to touch it.
“It’s disgusting to have to clean it up,” he said. “You’re just violated and disgusted because you have to clean it up.”