Violated By A Voyeur
Special Report: Violated By A Voyeur
Many suspects get away with it, those who don't usually just get a slap on the wrist. 7News looks at a number of local cases where women and even a little girl, were violated by a voyeur.
In a green line trolley a man using a laptop with a camera attached was taking photos up womenís skirts.
"He had photographed underneath her dress, the woman became alarmed on hearing this," Lt. Mark Gillespie said.
David Gould and Jelani Baker were both caught "upskirting" local women on T trains.
Both were convicted of disorderly conduct.
Baker's cameras, a computer and videotapes with hundreds of photos were seized.
"He told us that these pictures lead to a financial reward," Lt. Gillespie said. "$30 dollars per picture."
Those shots never made it to the Internet, but many do.
As cameras get smaller and are added to more hi tech devices, reports of these crimes are becoming all too common. Several victims are turning the tables on these video voyeurs.
"Upskirting is a lot more than some guy filming up your skirt and seeing your underwear," victim Jolene Jang said. "You donít' know what's going to happen next. Maybe your pictures will be sold on an Internet site, and maybe stalking, you don't really know, and that's what the fear is."
In one disturbing case at the Burlington mall, a 35-year-old man "upskirted" several teenage girls with a video camera hidden in a backpack. Burlington police discovered that his youngest victim was only 10.
"Unfortunately, there are young people, young children on tape, and people like this prey on anybody," Burlington Police Officer Bernie Schipelliti said.
"I think it's revolting, it's just very disgusting," Amy from Lexington said.
"Now that's bad," Ron from Cambridge said. "Pedophile, definitely out of control."
The Burlington mall voyeur might serve only a few months in jail if convicted because in Massachusetts, it's legal to videotape people in a public area. But a new law, which took effect last month, might give prosecutors an upper hand.
The law was written to combat under-cover photography of private parts. 7's legal analyst says this could easily be applied to "upskirt" cases.
"It's clearly directed to punish people who do exactly this, who photograph people with a cellphone or hidden technology, in some kind of sexual manner, and these people can go to jail," Attorney Tom Hoopes said.
To prevent becoming a victim, be aware of your surroundings.
"Nobody should be so close to you that you're uncomfortable," Officer Schipelliti said.
Be more alert on escalators and stairs.
"These people seem to be on a mission, walking behind people, beside people," Schipelliti said.
With more awareness, private areas will remain private.
Look at section 6 of this law: