Ex-Burying Hill lifeguard charged with spying on fellow employees
Updated 2:39 pm, Tuesday, December 29, 2015
A former lifeguard at Burying Hill Beach faces hundreds of voyeurism and eavesdropping charges after police said he secretly installed small cameras at the beach’s lifeguard shack last summer, and took videos of fellow employees “under circumstances where they had an expectation of privacy.”
Michael Collins, 29, of Arrowhead Road, also was charged Monday with possession of child pornography after police said they found pornographic images of children during their forensic examination of his electronic devices.
He was charged with 431 counts of both voyeurism and eavesdropping, as well as third-degree possession of child pornography.
The investigation began last Aug. 14, police said, after they were contacted by officials of the Parks and Recreation Department — which manages the beach staff and facilities — who said that two “mini cameras” were found in the Burying Hill lifeguard shack’s employee room.
Police detectives, according to the report, learned that Collins was suspected of having installed the cameras to take videos of fellow employees using the room.
Police later that day executed a search-and-seizure warrant at Collins’ Westport home where they said they found sun glasses equipped with cameras, laptop computers, DVDs, thumb drives and other electronic and surveillance gear believed to have been used by Collins.
The forensic examination of the devices, police said, showed they had been used to make the illegal videos at the lifeguard shack.
Bond was set at $75,000 and Collins is scheduled to appear Jan. 7 at state Superior Court in Norwalk.