The man who is accused of taking illegal nude videos of ESPN reporter Erin Andrews was suspended indefinitely from his position at Combined Insurance Company which is based out of Glenview, Illinois. Michael Barrett is charged with taking the videos through a peephole in Andrews’ hotel room.
But unfortunately, Andrews is not the only one who was captured by Barrett’s camera. He disclosed that he had taken videos of other women as well and uploaded the nude videos onto the internet and tried to sell the videos of Andrews to the celebrity gossip show TMZ to post on their website.
The 47-year old insurance executive hardly fits the picture of someone who you would expect to exhibit this type of behavior. He had a good job, plenty of money, no alcohol or drug use and no prior arrests or criminal record. Neighbors who lived near Barrett were just as surprised stating that they would never have suspected him but that he was a bit of a loner.
Most of the videos of Erin Andrews were taken from a hotel in Tennessee. Barrett specifically requested a room right next to Andrews where he shot seven of the eight videos through an altered peephole. Two of Barrett’s computers and a cell phone were confiscated and contain evidence of the videos of Andrews and other women.
The 31-year old Andrews has worked for ESPN for the past five years covering everything from hockey and college football to Major League Baseball. She was voted one of the sexiest sportscasters on television in 2008 and 2009 by Playboy magazine.
Andrews stayed at the Marriott hotel in Nashville at Vanderbilt University while covering the Auburn – Tennessee game in Knoxville. The hotel room apparently had a peephole that had been modified to allow someone to take videos using a cell phone.
While most of the videos were a result of her stay at the Marriott, the other video in question was thought to have been filmed at a Ramada Conference Center in Milwaukee. Again, the room had a similarly modified peephole but it was determined that Andrews did not show up for her reservation.
Both hotel chains have issued statements saying that they take the security and privacy of their guests seriously. But it is not clear yet whether Andrews is going to pursue legal action against the hotels where the videos were taken.
This type of invasion of privacy is something we generally don’t even consider when staying at a respected hotel chain. But the damages that stem from not only taking the videos without the consent of the victim but posting them on the internet for all to see is a serious violation. Barrett has an October 23rd court date at the U.S. District Court in Los Angeles to face federal charges of interstate stalking. Interstate stalking carries a fine of $250,000 as well as a maximum of five years in federal prison.