ROCHESTER, NH (CBS) – According to a police affidavit, a tiny pin-hole camera, the size of an eraser, was discovered hidden in the ceiling of a bathroom by a woman at Merchants Plaza in Rochester New Hampshire.
Captain Paul Touissant, of the Rochester Police Department, says “she was using the women’s restroom, a common area restroom and she noticed a strange device in the ceiling and discovered it was a pinhole type camera.”
Police are not releasing any details about the investigation, however according to the affidavit for the search warrant, the woman who discovered the camera went down the hall to Foster’s Daily Democrat’s Rochester Bureau for help. There, she says she spoke with part time reporter Conor Makem.
The affidavit states the victim “asked Conor what they should do” and the “agreed it should be called into police.” However, then according to the documents, the woman “learned Conor never actually called police about this camera, nor turned it in.” She also told police, “Conor told her she didn’t need to worry about this device and that it was actually just a red light.”
Police obtained a search warrant to seize Makem’s iPhone and laptop, along with the news computer from the Foster’s Bureau. Foster’s Executive Editor says, “Without intending to interfere with the police investigation, we are disturbed by the threat to the First Amendment and the free press by the courts and police in the seizure of our computer without our ability to defend these freedoms.”
Captain Toussaint says, “We understand their concerns however our first priority is to protect the citizens of Rochester and the victim in this case. We received the complaint and developed probable cause there was evidence of this crime located in one of those computers and we obtained a search warrant.”
Police say Makem refused to give them his passwords. Foster’s editor was told police expect to keep the computers for two weeks. Makem has not been available for any comment.
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