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Vice principal in NJ allegedly put camera in showers

December 29, 2011 4:28:58 AM PST
A middle school vice principal and high school volunteer is under arrest, accused of videotaping boys in the shower.

Patrick Lott, vice principal of Bernardsville Middle School and volunteer coach at Immaculata High School is being held on $500,000 bail.

The Somerset County Prosecutor's office says that two weeks ago, investigators seized computer files from Lott's Eastern Avenue home and found images and videos of male students at Immaculata as they bathed in a communal shower.

At least nine of the teens are under the age of 16.

No one answered the door at Lott's home and many neighbors declined to speak, except one who says he's known Lott for decades.

"I don't believe it," Somerville resident Harry Potts said. "I don't believe it. He's a nice guy."

Police won't say what tipped them off, but after seeing the images, they were able to locate the hidden camera.

Lott is charged with 22 counts of invasion of privacy and 27 counts of endangering the welfare of a child.

Eyewitness News spoke to parents arriving for a basketball game.

"I think it's awful," Renee Nicholson said. "You think your kids are safe at school and their sports programs."

The school sent a letter to parents, saying in part: "Our school has worked with detectives from the very beginning to provide information and access, and we do everything in our power to provide a safe environment for our students."

Visiting basketball players spoke to Eyewitness News as they were headed to the gym.

"When you go into a locker room, it just feels weird and awkward," Stephen Steyer said.

Lott has played a prominent role in education in Somerset County.

The prosecutor's office says its investigation into his alleged activities is far from over.

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