On Wednesday, Nov. 30 at 7:30 p.m. University Police arrested a suspect after two cameras were found in the Student Life Center.
After a quick initial investigation, Frederick William Weitz, 32, was booked into the Salt Lake County Jail on one count of identity fraud and four counts of voyeurism by concealed equipment. Identity fraud is a third-degree felony, voyeurism is a Class A misdemeanor.
University Police are investigating the case from a victim-informed and victim-centric approach, Chief Jason Hinojosa said, including protecting any images and videos found on the cameras. In compliance with state law, and using secure software, all evidence taken from the cameras will be stored on a locked down, trackable system and accessible only to the investigating detectives and their supervisors. No images have been downloaded to police laptops or cell phones.
“We are outraged by the grotesqueness of this crime—the violation of our campus’ sense of privacy and safety in what is supposed to be a fun and secure place of recreation,” Hinojosa said. “We have a suspect in custody, but we are not celebrating. As we fill in the facts of this case, we have victims we need to focus on identifying, offering our support and getting them the resources they need to manage this trauma.”
At 11:30 a.m., a patron at the Student Life Center found a camera taped under a sink in a third-floor all-gender bathroom and took it to the front desk. Staff called University Police, who took custody of the camera and searched restrooms throughout the building. A second camera was located in an all-gender bathroom on the basement level. Tape which may have attached a third camera was discovered under a sink in a second-floor, all-gender restroom.
After reviewing images on the cameras, police identified a potential suspect and arrested him at his home in Murray. Weitz is not a University of Utah student, staff or faculty member. He used an acquaintance’s university identification number without permission to access the Student Life Center.
“I’d like to thank the Student Life Center staff and patrons who alerted officers to the cameras in the first place,” Hinojosa added. “Without their help, this case would not have progressed as quickly to an arrest.”
Going forward, university staff will be checking bathrooms across campus for any additional cameras. Police urge any member of the campus community who sees suspicious activity or finds a camera or signs of a camera not to touch the evidence and to call U Police dispatch at 801-585-2677.
“This information is upsetting and disturbing. Many of our patrons will feel victimized and violated by the perpetrator who installed these cameras in what are supposed to be private and safe areas of our recreation center,” John MacDonald, director of the Student Life Center, wrote in a letter to center staff and patrons Wednesday. “Please know that university leaders share your outrage and will do everything in our power to hold responsible the person who destroyed our sense of safety and community.”
University leaders urge anyone impacted by this incident to reach out to victim advocates with the Center for Student Wellness and at University Safety. The University of Utah’s comprehensive student support resources, including mental health services, also are available to any of the impacted patrons.