After a little over a month of investigating the case, on Tuesday, August 18th, a transient man was sentenced 9 years and 8 months in state prison for making secret video recordings in women’s public restrooms. He will also be labeled as a registered sex offender for life.
The recording was discovered on July 9th, when a woman went to the restroom with her child at a Starbucks on 855 West Avenue K in Lancaster. While they were in there, the child noticed a cell phone that was taped to the sink’s pipe lining. The mother instantly called the Lancaster Sheriff’s Station, and Lancaster Deputies responded and recovered the phone.
A week later, on July 16th, detectives, in collaboration with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Fraud and Cyber Crimes Bureau, were able to identify the suspect by retrieving a photo of him from the cell phone.
The subject was arrested later that day for a violation of penal code 647(j)(3)(a) – using a concealed recorder to film someone fully or partially undressed, without their consent, in a private location like a changing room or bathroom. During the investigation, deputies also learned that he had a government document with a false seal, several cell phones, and SIM cards. The suspect also admitted to have been secretly video recording women and children in women’s public restrooms for months. After reviewing the other SIM cards and cell phones, deputies were able to confirm the information.
The suspect was identified as 38-year-old Antonio Serrano. According to the report, he pleaded no contest on eight counts. Five of the counts were unauthorized invasion of privacy, one for possession of child pornography, one for identity theft, and one for loitering about a bathroom to solicit lewd acts.
Serrano had videos recorded in the women’s restrooms of the Starbucks, Chuck E. Cheese, and the Antelope Valley Mall in Lancaster. By court order, he is never allowed to contact those places again.
The prosecutor noted that Serrano had been video recording at least eight unsuspecting victims between May 1 and July 16.
The case was investigated by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, Lancaster Station.