Twenty-four-year-old Ryan A. Perez was indicted by a grand jury today on several charges stemming from allegations that he filmed nude women in the women’s locker room at the Somerville YMCA. Perez has been charged with wiretapping, possession of child pornography (found on his phone after police were authorized to search it), and “photographing an unsuspecting nude person,” according to media reports.
As earlier news reports indicated, Perez was allegedly caught videotaping a woman from underneath a bathroom stall-using a cell phone-on the morning of November 1, 2011at the Somerville YMCA. An investigation of his phone revealed several videos made during a short period of time that day, as well as child pornography. The case is being led by Middlesex District Attorney Gerard Leone. Perez was indicted in Middlesex District Court.
Massachusetts courts take charges of sex crimes incredibly seriously. Conviction can result not only in harsh penalties, including imprisonment, but also lifelong stigma, a tarnished reputation, and consequent difficulty finding future employment and educational opportunities. Moreover, convicted sex offenders are also required to register with the Massachusetts Sex Offender Registry Board.
Charges of “Peeping Toms” are not all that uncommon in Massachusetts, with multiple reports and arrests made in the Boston area over the last several years. The seriousness of Peeping Toms charges has risen dramatically with YouTube, blogs, and other means of distributing videos and photos globally. To reduce the risk of occurrences like the more recent incident at the Somerville YMCA, many gyms today forbid the use of any cell phones in locker rooms. Of course, such rules are useless in situations where unauthorized persons enter a locker room. Perez will need to mount an incredibly strong defense if he has any hope of dismissing or mitigating the charges against him.
Somerville man indicted on videotaping women at YMCA, Boston.com, February 7, 2012
Peeping Tom video lands two students in district court, Boston.com, June 12, 2008