Kent woman recalls how mystery man approached her car at midnight

A young woman from Charing was spooked after her journey was interrupted by a “sinister-looking” man staring into her car, whilst she sat at a red light. 

Olivia Adams, 18, was driving from Hastings to her hometown of Charing after dropping a friend home on the night of November 22 (Thursday). Her route required her to pass through Tenterden.

The student recalled the night when she was supposedly approached: “I had just visited my friend in Hastings, and I had just dropped my other friend back home. I was just coming into Tenterden and I got to a set of temporary traffic lights outside Tesco. I pulled up at the traffic lights and they just turned red. I noticed something move in my wing mirror on the passenger side, so I just looked over thinking it was just a bush or something, but there was a man.”

Olivia Adams.

“He was crouched down, just looking straight through at me in the car. So, I looked over and we made eye contact. It felt like ages.”

As the lights turned from red to green, Olivia sped off.

She continued: “I looked in my mirror, he put his arms up like “Why did you go?”, it was quite frightening.

“He was on the passenger side – I don’t know if he walked down and I had not seen him in the rear view mirror or if he came out from the side of the road. I’m not sure where he came from, I just saw him at my window.

“The picture that stays with me is his eyes.”

“He didn’t say anything or make any gestures, he literally just made eye contact with me for what felt like a long time. The picture that stays with me is his eyes.

“It was really scary, I just didn’t know if he tried to get into my car, but I didn’t hear anything. It was pitch black and 12 o’clock at night and he looked quite tall with a black hat.”

The incident was on Smallhythe Road, Tenterden-bound.

Olivia decided not to report this incident to the police, as she felt she didn’t have enough information about the man’s appearance and it ‘wouldn’t have done much anyway’.

“I didn’t get that much sleep that night, I kept thinking about what if he had tried to get into my car or what if he tried to take my registration? I don’t know how long he was there for.”

Olivia is advising other drivers about being safer whilst driving late at night: “Keep your doors locked. I just want everybody to keep their doors locked from the inside so that no-one can get in. If I hadn’t, he could have literally just got in my car. It has panicked me”

“I don’t even want to think about what his intentions could have been.”

“People have said to me ‘what if he was walking his dog, or if he was lost?’ which is possible, but there have also been sinister thoughts that, that wasn’t what he was up to. If the door was unlocked, I don’t even want to think about what his intentions could have been.”

The young driver had only been driving for 9 months but insists that this incident won’t shake her, saying: “Tenterden is a lovely little town, I work here and it won’t affect my view of it.”

Brittany Tijou-Smith

Brittany is a third year Multimedia Journalism student, her work has been featured on KentLive and KentOnline. Her filming work also won ‘Documentary of the Year 2018’ at Canterbury Christ Church University.

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