A New Hampshire man has been indicted on charges that he secretly videotaped women in a public restroom at a cafe in Arlington, Massachusetts.
Joseph Hennessey, 53, of Salem, was indicted by a Middlesex County grand jury on four counts of photographing or videotaping a person in the state of nudity and one count of interception of oral communications.
Hennessey was arrested by Arlington Police on Sept. 13 at the Kickstand Cafe, located at 594 Massachusetts Ave. Police said he allegedly placed a small camera in a fake basket of flowers in the women's bathroom, transmitting images to a small video receiver as he sat in the main restaurant.
Police were alerted to the suspect by an alleged victim, a former cafe manager who says she recognized the suspect. She said he had been at the cafe the previous week acting suspiciously.
"People need to act on their instincts because usually when they sense something isn't adding up they're correct," Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan said. "In this case, the employee saw something out of place, noticed a man acting suspiciously, and then called police. The employee stopped a situation that was an extreme example of an invasion of privacy."
Hennessey's attorney said in court that the fake basket of flowers did belong to his client, claiming he found them and was saving them for his daughter. Hennessey said he did not know there was a camera inside, however. He said he did go into the women's bathroom and left the flowers inadvertently because he needed to quickly take his medication for irritable bowel syndrome.
At the time of the incident, police said Hennessey was an Arlington Department of Public Works employee who was out on compensation.