Custodian enters not guilty plea to invasion of privacy charges

A former custodian at Clear Creek Elementary School has entered a plea of not guilty on four counts of invasion of privacy.

While employed as a custodian with the Clear Lake School District, the 46-year-old David Bemis allegedly placed a video recording device in a staff bathroom at Clear Creek Elementary School, 901 S. 14th St.  The recording occurred in May 2013.

According to a news release issued by the Clear Lake Police Department, in January 2018, the Clear Lake Community School District became aware of possible invasions of privacy that occurred in one of their schools.  District officials contacted the CLPD to investigate.  Investigators were able to recover video evidence that showed brief footage of a staff restroom.  The video showed only four school employees in states of partial nudity.

There is no evidence of any student being recorded or involved.

Bemis, who was employed by the district for 19 years, was placed on administrative leave immediately and every bathroom and locker room in all Clear Lake school buildings was searched, according to Clear Lake Schools Superintendent Doug Gee.  Based on the police investigation and through forensic examination of all the equipment, Gee said school officials are confident the recording was an isolated incident.

Law enforcement says the video was found on a computer in Bemis’ home.

Bemis resigned his position with the school district in January and was taken to Cerro Gordo County Jail Feb. 12.  He has since been released on bond.  He has waived his preliminary hearing and an arraignment date in the case has not yet been set.

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