CRIME, POLICE + COURTS

Hidden cameras found in restrooms in U of U Student Life Center, suspect in custody

Nov 30, 2022, 9:28 PM | Updated: Jan 5, 2023, 2:44 pm
A suspect is in custody Wednesday evening after University of Utah Police say two hidden cameras we...
University of Utah Police say a suspect is in custody after two hidden cameras were found inside two different restrooms inside the Student Life Center on Wednesday. (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY — A suspect was taken into custody Wednesday evening after University of Utah Police say two hidden cameras were found in two different bathrooms inside the Student Life Center.

A probable cause statement identified the suspect as 32-year-old Frederick William Weitz. Police suspect Weitz of identity fraud and four counts of voyeurism by electronic equipment, concealed or disguised and burglary.

According to the affidavit, police executed a search warrant on the devices and found numerous bathrooms with devices.

In a press conference update on Thursday, U of U Police Department Capt. Brian Lohrke said, “We are outraged, as a university, as a police department, about this crime. We will not stand for any predatory means upon our students.”

Lohrke said the police department’s focus now is on identifying victims, notifying them and connecting them to resources. 

“We were very happy to get this person into custody, but our focus right now is completely on the victims,” Lohrke said.

Now the focus is on building a bulletproof case and ensuring prosecution.

Lohrke also said the university was putting a “concerted effort” into searching the rest of the campus.

Initial response from the U

In a press release, John McDonald, director of the Eccles Student Life Center, stated an individual discovered a camera taped under the sink in an all-gender bathroom on the third floor. The press release further states that the person brought the camera to the front desk, who then called the police.

Lohrke said officers searched the entire building after responding to the scene.

According to the press release, officers found a second camera in an all-gender bathroom in the basement. Furthermore, tape that may have been attached to a third camera was found under the sink in an all-gender bathroom on the second floor.

Police believe Weitz stole the identity of a co-worker without his knowledge to obtain a gym pass claiming he was a University Alumni. 

Lohrke said Weitz chose not to speak to investigators after his arrest.

What is on the hidden cameras

Police have custody of both cameras and are trying to gain access to the recordings and images on each. 

“I know that this information is upsetting and disturbing,” McDonald wrote in the press release. “Many of our patrons will feel victimized and violated by the perpetrator who installed these cameras in what are supposed to be private and safe areas of our recreation center. Please know that university leaders share your outrage and will do everything in our power to hold responsible the person who destroyed our sense of safety and community.”

McDonald also asks anyone who sees anything suspicious to call University Police at 801-585-2677. Lohrke advised that anyone who sees something not touch anything and instead just get in touch with the police.

Lohrke said that investigators have gotten information about whether the hidden cameras were streaming to outside sources or recording, but that that information will be kept under wraps for now.

Victim resources

During the press conference on Thursday, Lohrke said the Department of Public Safety has had crime victim advocates available since the beginning of the case. 

In addition, the U’s Student Wellness Center offers survivor advocates to assist those affected.

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Hidden cameras found in restrooms in U of U Student Life Center, suspect in custody