Anastasia Economides

Janitor Charged With Secretly Recording in Westchester Village Hall Bathroom

A janitor was arrested and charged with secretly recording women in the bathroom at Ossining's Village Hall, authorities said.

Lider E. Velez, 48, set up a recording device in a bathroom inside Village Hall on Croton Avenue, police said.

Velez had been a maintenance worker at the building for 14 years. Investigators believe he was trying to get video of one employee in particular for reasons that aren’t clear, but there are three people who use the bathroom in question and it is open to the public, though rarely used.

Ossining Police Chief Kevin Sylvester said the camera was mounted underneath the sink.

“We believed [the camera] had been aimed at a mirror on the other side of the room to give a wider view,” Sylvester said.

Ossining Mayor Victoria Gearity said she was “horrified by the apparent actions of this individual.”

Residents in town were equally horrified.

“It’s very shocking,” said Cathy Trocheck. “He wasn’t a young, little kid. He was really wrong.”

Police said it was hard to figure out that Velez was involved. He has no prior criminal history and the people who know him had never expected this.

“Quiet employee who went about his business,” Mayor Gearity said.

Officers were able to access the device once they retrieved, and there was evidence on the camera itself that indicated who had placed it there,” Sylvester said.

Velez has been charged with multiple counts of unlawful surveillance and was suspended without pay, police said. His bail was set at $7,500 Wednesday night.

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