B.C. man who installed hidden cameras in workplace bathrooms sentenced for voyeurism, child pornography
Warning: This story contains disturbing details.
A B.C. man has been sentenced to one year in jail for voyeurism and child pornography, charges that stemmed in part from filming his colleagues and their children with "strategically placed" hidden cameras in workplace bathrooms.
The sentence was handed down in Kamloops Provincial Court and posted online last week. However, the offenses occurred between 2014 and 2016, according to court documents. The man, referred to only as G.S.H. due to a publication ban meant to protect the identities of his victims, pleaded guilty in May of 2022.
"Mr. H.’s criminal behaviour in Kamloops did not come to light until August 2016 when Mr. H. was arrested in Kingston, Ont., and charged with similar events," the decision reads.
"Specifically, he was charged and convicted in Ontario with two counts of voyeurism, one count of making child pornography and one count of possessing child pornography in that location."
Following his conviction, he spent two years in prison in that province for those crimes. On the day he was released in 2019, he was arrested on the B.C. charges.
THE VOYEURISM CHARGE
Justice Lorianna Bennet, in her sentencing decision, said that when G.S.H. was in charge of renovating workplace washrooms he "deliberately planned and installed what appeared to be a sophisticated hidden-camera recording regime."
In one bathroom, the court heard, G.S.H. installed the camera in a paper towel dispenser directly across from the toilet and ran a cord into the ceiling to connect it with a power source. In the other, he attached the camera to a wood block he installed under the sink using Velcro, and again ran a cord up to the ceiling.
The cameras were installed in 2014 and discovered in 2016.
Bennet noted that this came to light during the Ontario investigation. When G.S.H.'s devices were seized in that province, investigators found "video footage of people entering the two washrooms and using the toilet with their genitals exposed," as well as one of G.S.H. installing a camera. "Coincidentally," the court heard, the Kamloops company discovered and reported "suspicious items" in the two bathrooms around the same time.
Devices seized from G.S.H.'s home in Kamloops revealed more footage of "numerous" adults and children using the workplace bathrooms as well as footage of a girl between eight and 12 years old changing into a bathing suit.
"In the case of the voyeurism charges, Mr. H.’s victims were vulnerable in that he recorded individuals in washrooms where they would have had a high expectation of privacy," the judge wrote, explaining some of the aggravating factors at play.
"Mr. H. was in a position of trust. He was a trusted and valued employee ... when he undertook two washroom-renovation projects. The washrooms were used not only by his coworkers, but also by their children."
The name of the workplace is absent from the decision because it is also covered by the publication ban.
THE CHILD PORNOGRAPHY CHARGE
The electronics seized in Kamloops also revealed a large and disturbing cache of child pornography, according to the decision. There were three videos and over 500 images, all featuring girls between four and 16 years old, the court heard.
"(They) showed the children posing in a sexual manner, engaged in sexual acts with other children, or engaged in vaginal or anal intercourse with adult males," according to the decision.
He was charged with one count of possessing child pornography.
THE CHARGES IN OTHER JURISDICTIONS
Bennett's decision does not go into detail on the charges and convictions that took place in Ontario, only saying that the offenses were "similar." However, the court documents do reveal some details about what led to G.S.H. being indicted on three counts of producing images of child pornography in the U.S.
The 2016 investigation in Ontario found "digital images of a female’s genitals," the judge wrote. The photos were allegedly taken during a trip to Memphis that same year.
"Mr. H. had travelled to Tennessee to stay with friends and one of the families he stayed with had a three-year-old daughter," the court documents say. The U.S. attempted to have G.S.H. extradited to face the charges, but he successfully challenged the move arguing his Charter rights were violated in the course of the investigation.
G.S.H.'s lawyer, the judge said, was the one who brought the court's attention to these prior charges. In asking for a conditional sentence and no jail time, the defense argued G.S.H. should have been sentenced for the B.C. and Ontario charges simultaneously because they would have been "treated as a single criminal adventure." Further, the defence argued that "to send Mr. H. back to prison now, especially in light of all of the rehabilitation he has done, would subject him to unusually severe consequences."
The judge ultimately disagreed.
"There is no nexus between the British Columbia and Ontario offences. The British Columbia offences were separate offences, with separate victims, in a jurisdiction on the opposite side of the country at different times," she wrote.
"These facts cannot be ignored, nor can I ignore the fact that while Mr. H. did receive a significant level of rehabilitation through counselling, that counselling was undertaken only because he was convicted of further similar offences. Additionally, the fact that Mr. H. has received counselling for other similar offences does not automatically negate the need for it here."
However, because the B.C. crimes predated the Ontario charges, G.S.H. was considered by the court to be a first-time offender for the purposes of sentencing.
Although the maximum sentence for voyeurism is 10 years and that for possession of child pornography is also 10 – Bennett noted Crown Counsel only argued for one year. Bennett agreed the offence warranted jail time.
"I find that a conditional sentence order would be unfit and contrary to the public interest; it would be an insufficient sentence to communicate the wrongfulness of Mr. H.’s conduct to both himself and to the larger community," she wrote.
G.S.H. was sentenced to one year for the voyeurism charge and one year for the child pornography charge, to be served concurrently and to be followed by an additional year of probation. The terms include registering as a sex offender, no contact with his victims, providing a DNA sample and staying away from people under 16.
The judge considered G.S.H.'s early guilty plea, his remorse, and his efforts at rehabilitation while in prison in Ontario among mitigating factors. The number of victims, the length of time over which the voyeurism occurred, and the abuse of a position of trust were considered aggravating.
CTVNews.ca Top Stories
Canadian military would be 'challenged' to launch a large scale operation: chief of the defence staff
Canada’s military forces are 'ready' to meet their commitments should Russia's war in Ukraine spread to NATO countries, but it would be a 'challenge' to launch a larger scale operation in the long term, with ongoing personnel and equipment shortages, according to Chief of the Defence Staff Gen. Wayne Eyre.
Protests against China's restrictive COVID-19 measures appeared to roil in a number of cities Saturday night, in displays of public defiance fanned by anger over a deadly fire in the western Xinjiang region.
A 12-year-old boy is dead after playing Russian Roulette with peers in Jackson, Miss., police say.
Alcohol and speed were factors in a tragic collision that killed three junior hockey players in B.C.'s Lower Mainland last year, according to a coroner's report.
In less than 24 hours, Canada returns to the men’s FIFA World Cup for its next group stage match against Croatia. CTVNews.ca takes a look at what you need to know ahead of the game on Sunday.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said his country's ultimate goal is to possess the world's most powerful nuclear force, as he promoted dozens of military officers involved in the recent launch of North Korea's largest ballistic missile, state media reported on Sunday.
A man went missing from a Carnival cruise ship in the Gulf of Mexico. What happened next might well be a 'Thanksgiving miracle'
A passenger went missing from a Carnival cruise ship in the Gulf of Mexico. Quick thinking and a 'miracle' saved the man's life.
With a seemingly endless list of choices, finding the right toy this holiday season may seem like a daunting task. Industry observers share the toys that caught their eyes this year.
Health officials across the country have stopped short of issuing mask mandates, despite rising cases of flu, RSV and COVID-19 in many regions. CTVNews.ca looks into how each province and territory is approaching whether to require masks in indoor public spaces.
A Comox Valley man has been sentenced to 31 days in prison after pleading guilty to sex crimes for which he was arrested in August.
A 4.8-magnitude earthquake shook homes on Vancouver Island Friday night, but no damage has been reported, according to Earthquakes Canada.
Shelves are being stocked at the Sooke Food Bank in preparation for the upcoming Christmas hamper season.
Alberta Health Services (AHS) is eyeing emergency provisions to deal with a surge of patients inside the Alberta Children's Hospital.
Calgarians gathered Saturday to commemorate the 89th anniversary of the Holodomor, known as the terror-famine in the Soviet Union that killed millions of Ukrainians from 1932 to 1933.
Twelve new Calgary Transit and community peace officers are ready to hit the streets.
Edmonton transit drivers are sharing images of what they are seeing on buses and the LRT on a sometimes daily basis in the hopes it will push the city to hire more transit peace officers.
An Edmonton woman appeared on an episode of Jeopardy Friday night, completing a lifelong dream and getting the chance to compete against a 14-day champion.
While many people have their minds on getting the best Black Friday deal, local businesses are asking shoppers to consider them, as some owners feel the pandemic push of supporting local fade away.
Police say that two people are dead after a transport truck and an SUV collided on the Queen Elizabeth Way highway in Mississauga Saturday morning.
Two of the victims that were targeted in a series of violent home invasions in Markham are recounting their ordeal.
A man has been taken to hospital with serious injuries after a collision in Scarborough.
Revenu Quebec confirmed on Friday citizens will start receiving their $400 to $600 cheques to combat inflation in early December. At the same time, the agency is cautioning Quebecers to beware of fraud text messages and emails.
With the 2022 UN Biodiversity Conference (COP15) right around the corner, Montreal protestors are readying themselves for a busy December. On Saturday, a group of COP15 objectors gathered in the McGill University student union building for a seminar on protestor safety, police interactions and legal support.
Montreal-based Warner Bros. Entertainment release of Gotham Knights prompted calls for gaming companies to properly credit their workers. The issue is one that extends to many leading video game companies.
Manitoba RCMP are on the hunt for a Winnipeg man after a woman and her daughter were briefly kidnapped near Portage la Prairie Friday afternoon.
The Winnipeg Humane Society (WHS) is giving kids the chance to help pets in need this holiday season.
Winnipeg police are looking for suspects in the city's 47th homicide of the year.
'You don't expect that to come out here': Residents concerned over reported sexual assaults in Brighton neighbourhood
On Wednesday, November 16, Carly Tonkin says she was walking home with her dog through a park in the Brighton neighbourhood when she was approached.
As many medical clinics close their doors for good, medical professionals around Saskatchewan are looking for ways to meet patients' needs.
The University of Saskatchewan Huskies had one goal in mind when the season began in August: to win the Vanier Cup.
A group of Regina soccer fans made the journey to Qatar to cheer on Canada at the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
A driver is facing multiple charges after being caught speeding near Regina.
As many medical clinics close their doors for good, medical professionals around Saskatchewan are looking for ways to meet patients' needs.
Friends of a man who died waiting for care inside the Moncton Hospital’s ER waiting room this past week held a demonstration Saturday outside the building, demanding answers and action.
A Moncton family is breathing a sigh of relief after police misidentified a body found, but questions remain about how law enforcement made the serious mix-up.
A new proposal from Nova Scotia Power would see electricity rates rise nearly 14 per cent by 2024, despite efforts to limit increases by the province.
They’ve travelled from across the country to see their sons, brothers, and alma mater compete for the Vanier Cup
Thousands of Londoners lined Gainsborough road Saturday morning to see the man in red
This weekend local army reservists are taking part in training exercises across the province as the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) have had to respond to more natural disasters in recent years.
Throughout the afternoon Saturday, the Sudbury Five basketball team held an open tryouts at Notre Dame College on Lévis Street. Around a dozen people from across Ontario made their way to the city in hopes of making the team.
A Goulais, Ont. based tour agency was among eight award winners at the annual Northern Ontario Tourism Awards Summit this week.
The 3rd annual Let's Remember Adam Fill the Bus Toy and Food Drive took place in Mattawa Saturday.
‘Worked so hard to get to today’: Trustee speaks out after Cambridge confirms WCDSB election results
More than a month after Ontario’s municipal elections, the City of Cambridge clerk certified the results for the Waterloo Catholic District School Board (WCDSB) trustee election.
A pedestrian has been seriously injured following a collision at a busy Kitchener roundabout.
Commercial flights in and out of Region of Waterloo International Airport were cancelled Friday after a Flair Airlines plane carrying 140 people overran the runway during landing.