White Lake police investigate hidden camera in bathroom

James David Dickson
The Detroit News

Police in White Lake Township are investigating after a hidden camera was found in a women’s bathroom by an employee of a car dealership, Police Chief Adam Kline said.

The 911 call came in from a female employee at Szott M-59 Chrysler Jeep at about 1 p.m. Wednesday. The woman was in the bathroom when she noticed the camera. She thought it was suspicious and called police to report it.

The investigation is in its early stages, but Kline said “we do have some leads on the camera, as to who might be the owner.”

Kline said that “endless” charges are possible in the event a suspect is charged, depending on the extent of what, if anything, was captured by the camera, and if those images were distributed.

Kline said that while the camera was “capable” of recording, police aren’t yet sure if it was. The camera, Kline said, will be sent to Michigan State Police for a “detailed forensic examination.”

Thad Szott, 46, part of the family group that owns the Chrysler Jeep dealership and three others in the area, said the incident left the 100 or so employees of the dealership “shell-shocked” at the invasion of privacy it represents.

“Our team is an extension of our family,” Szott said. “We’re all rattled by this.”

When the female employee encountered the camera, she immediately ran into the main office and alerted the management team, Szott said. They alerted him, and Szott ordered that no one touch it. Then he said he called 911.

White Lake police showed up instantly, almost as soon as Szott had hung up the phone, he said — one advantage of being located across M-59 from police headquarters.

Szott said the dealership, which has been around since 2001, will cooperate fully with the police investigation.