B.C. grocery store employees file suit against alleged ‘peeping tom’

Claim alleges a former employee videotaped them in the washroom and shared photos on the internet

Two former employees of a popular Victoria grocery store have filed a class action suit over illicit images of themselves that were allegedly taken in an employee washroom and shared over the internet.

The claim alleges these images were taken by a former employee of the Red Barn Market, a popular local grocery chain with seven locations throughout Greater Victoria. This employee worked at the Mattick’s farm location in Cordova Bay, and it’s alleged they set up a video camera in the washroom at various times between 2009 and 2014. The claim also alleges there are at least six more victims.

It wasn’t until 2016 that one of the plaintiffs was approached by police in Greater Victoria and shown images of herself on a Russian-based porn site (including her name in caption), that she learned she was a victim of the alleged behaviour, said a release to media.

“In January of 2016 we started the investigation into a voyeurism complaint regarding a grocery store employee in Saanich,” said Saanich Police Sgt. Jereme Leslie. “We had a complainant come forward stating they had found images of them self online, that’s how we began the investigation, and through that process we were able to identify and speak to nine potential victims.”

Saanich Police executed search warrants of the alleged suspect and gathered evidence from those search warrants which led to an arrest. However, charges against the suspect have not been sworn and Leslie is unsure when those will come in.

“Saanich Police is satisfied that we’ve identified and contacted the potential victims but the investigation is still ongoing.” Leslie said. “They can be very complicated in these types of cases, long in nature, with a lot of information to sort through.”

The first plaintiffs in the claim worked there between 2012 and 2014 and second between 2007 and 2012, while the alleged suspect worked there from 2009 2014.

The second plaintiff alleged that in February of 2016 members of the Saanich Police made her aware of images on the internet that included a picture from her Facebook page, her identity and explicit photos taken from the Red Barn washroom.

In all, the claim seeks damages to compensate for the emotional and physical harm, in an amount to be assessed by the court.

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