Sure this was a sting, but damn! a lot of innocent people get caught up in this! They can film me taking a piss in a public restroom? This is sickening!!!!!!!! downright shameful.
COLUMBUS -- A December ruling by the Seventh Ohio District Court of Appeals in Youngstown that gave police permission to hide video cameras in public toilets will be appealed to the Ohio Supreme Court, the Gay People's Chronicle reports.
The appeals court also upheld a public indecency conviction against one of thirteen men arrested in July, 2001 in a highway rest stop sex-cottaging sting operation conducted by local police and prosecutors.
Saline Township Police Chief Kenneth Hayes and Jefferson County Prosecutor Bryan Felmet hid video cameras inside the men's toilet light fixtures and conducted video surveillance.
One of the accused, James Henry, was convicted for standing at a restroom urinal for 47 seconds in May 2001. He is shown leaving the restroom without incident.
At his trial, prosecutors convinced the jury that because Henry stepped back from the urinal before fastening his pants, anyone entering the facility "could have" come to the conclusion that Henry was masturbating. He was summarily convicted of public indecency.
The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that cameras in public restrooms, locker rooms, jail cells and dressing rooms constitute illegal searches and thus violate the Fourth Amendment.
But in a unanimous opinion, the three-judge appellate panel ruled Henry had "no reasonable expectation of privacy so long as he remained in the common area" of the restroom.
Henry is optimistic about his chances to have the ruling overturned by the high court. "We just have to get this thing away from southeastern Ohio," he said.
Henry's lawyer, Sam Pate, is less optimistic and expressed his disappointment that national civil rights groups, like the American Civil Liberties Union, have not yet weighed in on this case.
And make sure you read THIS QUOTE from above as it bears repeating.
"But in a unanimous opinion, the three-judge appellate panel ruled Henry had "no reasonable expectation of privacy so long as he remained in the common area" of the restroom. "
Apparently we have no reasonable expectation of privacy in a public restroom. Does that mean I can put cameras in the bathroom at that courtroom? Or better yet, Congress?