An East Hampton landlord set up a spy-camera system that secretly recorded a family — including three young kids — as they changed, bathed and even lounged in the hot tub, a $4.6 million lawsuit charges.
Now East Hampton police and the Suffolk County DA are investigating what images landlord Donald Torr, of Celebration, Florida, caught on the recordings.
“We’re going through what’s on the tapes from the cameras in the bathrooms and bedrooms,” said a law-enforcement source.
Torr advertised the Winterberry Lane home — in a wooded area near Gardiners Bay — on a Web site as “a sanctuary for relaxation and privacy.”
A weeklong rental in August costs $6,500, the Web site says.
But the cameras secretly caught all nine family members — including two grandparents, their adult children and three kids, the oldest of whom is 7 — “in the nude. In addition, their bedroom activities were videoed,” the lawsuit said.
The images were recorded on a computer drive connected to the Internet so Torr could watch the footage, according to the suit.
“They felt completely violated. We believe it also violates the child-pornography statutes,’’ lawyer Judd Burstein said of his clients, who aren’t named in the suit.
One of the guests was watching TV in a bedroom during the week leading up to Labor Day when he noticed a camera lens.
The family searched the home and found cameras hidden in electrical outlets in two bedrooms, as well as one in the outdoor shower and another in an air-conditioning vent in another bedroom, the suit claims.
They called cops — but had to spend another night in the house while they waited for authorities to obtain a search warrant.
On Aug. 31, cops found cameras in a bedroom baseboard heater, in a smoke detector and over the Jacuzzi.
Torr admitted to his tenants that he could watch the footage from his home computer, but he claimed the cameras were set up only for security, the suit says.
The family cut short its stay, and Torr refunded their money, the suit says.
Outside his Florida home, Torr said he had the cameras installed to protect against squatters. He said he didn’t know that children had been recorded.
“We had break-ins and problems,” he said. “People have stayed in the house that were unauthorized.”source