A camera with video recording capabilities was found in the upstairs bathroom of a local restaurant by a patron after she used the facilities, according to police reports.
Officer Trevor Jones, of the Porterdale Police Department, was dispatched to Jimbo's Grill at the Mill, located at 2102 Main St. in Porterdale, on Wednesday, Aug. 20 around 8:47 p.m. after a woman reported she noticed a "circular lens" in a plant positioned in front of the toilet as she was pulling her jeans up.
According to reports, the woman picked the camera up and took it out of the plant, the report said, noticing it was a recording device and was "positioned to observe the toilet area." She then called 911.
Jones stated he was approached by the late Eddie Cain, 49, of Covington, after he received the complainant's consent for a written statement.
"Mr. Cain advised me that he had also noticed the camera in the restroom plant box," Jones stated in the report.
As he explained to Jones what he observed, the officer wrote in the report that Cain was "extremely nervous" and "kept telling me different variations of his own story. I asked Mr. Cain if he would also provide me with a written statement. Mr. Cain stated that he observed the camera in the plant and that he picked it up and placed it back into the plant. Mr. Cain stated that he did this around (7:15 p.m.)."
The report said Cain did not give a reason as to why he failed to notify anyone of the camera between 7:15 p.m. and when the woman called 911 at 8:47 p.m.
Photos of the camera were apparently taken at the scene, and it was removed from the plant box to be placed into evidence. The camera contained a sim card that "may hold video evidence on it and will be reviewed at a later date." Evidence was turned over to Detective Eddie Manders with the Porterdale Police Department.
The complainant and witness names were redacted in the paper copy of police report provided to The Covington News by the Porterdale Police Department but were not in the electronic copy provided by District Attorney Layla Zon through an open records request.
"The investigation revealed that the images were not disseminated or stored on any media device other than the device that was seized by the Porterdale Police Department," Zon said in an emailed statement. "It is impossible to identify the victims in the images on the camera storage device without further dissemination of the images. Since this would further invade the privacy of these victims, and since there will be no prosecution, no efforts at victim identification will be undertaken."
Zon said the Porterdale PD had intended to question Cain on the incident and received case documents to review but that the case is now essentially closed since there is "no one to prosecute."
Zon assured, "the device and the images contained therein that were received by the District Attorney's office will be protected in a locked evidence room pursuant to the Georgia Records Retention Schedule."