Oak Bluffs police arrested an Edgartown man Sunday and charged him with using a phone camera to photograph under the skirts of unsuspecting women on Circuit Avenue and at other locations.
Carlos R. Deoliveira, 39, of Edgartown was arraigned Monday, August 4 on four separate charges of photographing an unsuspecting nude person, one count of photographing the sexual or intimate parts of a person, and one count of attempting to commit a crime.
The court entered not guilty pleas for Mr. Deoliveira on all charges. He was released after posting $1,000 bail.
A witness who called police said she observed Mr. Deoliveira following young women and trying to take pictures using a phone camera concealed in the bottom of a shopping bag. When confronted by police on Circuit Avenue, he twice denied the allegations, but allowed Oak Bluffs police officer Michael Cotrone to view his phone, according to a police report by Officer James Morse.
“Officer Cotrone located a video clip that clearly shows the holder of the phone walking up behind a female in a short skirt and filming her,” according to the report. “The film was shot from the rear of the female depicted and appears that she is unaware of what the person with the camera is doing.”
Police obtained a search warrant to view images on the phone. Officer Morse found 14 separate video clips in various locations in Oak Bluffs and Tisbury, including a bookstore, a takeout restaurant, a clothing store, and the Game Room arcade. Most of the clips show similar views taken from a low angle, under women’s skirts. Others show Mr. Deoliveira adjusting the angle of the camera inside the plastic bag.
Mr. Deoliveira was charged under a state law passed only five months ago. The offense made national headlines after the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled that there was no state law prohibiting it. Within two days, the state legislature enacted, and the governor signed, a new statute making the behavior illegal.
If convicted, the crime carries punishment of up to 2.5 years in a house of correction, a $5,000 fine, or both.