Seven instructors at Bayside STEAM Academy in Imperial Beach have filed complaints with the state, alleging that they were videotaped by a mobile phone placed in a faculty bathroom. They also say that the South Bay Union School District should have done more to safeguard them.
What was the total number of women or girls who were recorded on the cell phone? How often should I do this? How long do you want to keep it? Eva Lopez-Zepeda, a Bayside teacher, continues to be plagued by these and other questions.
“I was completely taken aback,” Lopez-Zepeda recalled. My stomach hurt so much I couldn’t eat anything. “I was trembling because I was enraged. ”
The restrooms were not in the school but in a separate building on the property, which was convenient. Tanya Knight, a teacher, claimed she frequently used the facility because it was reserved for females only and required a key.
Both instructors, and five other individuals, filed complaints with the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing after school administrators informed them that another employee admitted to putting a phone in a lavatory to record women using the facilities.
According to the allegation, one employee was “involved in a clandestine scheme of spying on and recording innumerable nude girls visiting the school’s restrooms,” according to the complaint. “A female Bayside instructor found a hidden cell phone was capturing her as she was sat inside a cubicle,” the story continues.
Knight believes that the recording began sometime around July of last year.
According to the school, the phone was discovered on October 21st. Both teachers claim that the phone was placed in a stall trash bin between the bin and the liner, with the camera recording via a hole in the trash can and that the phone was turned on. The can was put on top of another can that looked similar to it.
The incident is being investigated, according to the San Diego Sheriff’s Department, which was broadcast on NBC 7. It is alleged in the civil rights complaint that the school system neglected to undertake an adequate investigation in order to avoid such sexual assault from occurring in the future.
“It was a horrible feeling, a feeling of violation, a feeling of trust being violated,” Lopez-Zepeda recalled after the incident.
Both teachers have stated that returning to work has been difficult.
“I didn’t feel completely at ease. I truly had to leave work one day due to a family emergency. What happened is beyond my comprehension, but I had to leave work and go to Urgent Care,” Knight explained.
According to both teachers and the lawsuit, a male employee admitted to placing the phone and resigned five days after it was discovered, according to the complaint.
It is not possible to identify the man because he has not been charged with any crime, according to NBC 7.
“South Bay Union School District takes staff safety and security very seriously and we were horrified to learn of the allegations of employee wrongdoing,” according to a statement made by Superintendent Jose Espinoza.
The district has provided complete cooperation to law enforcement throughout the course of the investigation. “At this time, the district is unable to provide any additional information in order to safeguard the privacy rights of all individuals concerned.”