From the Files of – I Can’t Believe We Have to Worry About Crap Like This: Vol. 21

Via Huffington Post DC comes an insane report from WTOP titled Family sues Starbucks over hidden toilet camera:

“William Yockey and family, from Norfolk, Va., were visiting the nation’s capital April 23, 2011. After sightseeing, they stopped in the Starbucks at 7th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue in Northwest, across the street from the Archives Metro station in Penn Quarter.

In the complaint, Yockey and his 5-year-old daughter found one of the two unisex bathrooms locked. They used the other.

After both used the toilet, the daughter noticed a small video camera, lodged in the U-joint of the sink, pointing toward the toilet.”

25 Comment

  • Right, let’s sue Starbucks because it is apparently their secret corporate policy to film people using their restrooms.

    • I’m OK with suing. You don’t have to win or even settle for 4 million dollars. you can settle with an agreement that Starbucks will institute some new policy of checking bathrooms for cameras, or whatever.

      The point is, suing doesn’t *have* to be about the money, but it can just be a way to get the company’s attention to make some policy change.

      Not suing but simply writing a strongly worded letter doesn’t always get results.

  • There is indeed sketchiness that goes on in this city and some of it happens in fast food chain bathroom, starbucks included. Thus I would say starbucks has every right to have a camara in the bathroom as long as it is obviously not for various preverted activities

    • you are really smart

    • I’m at work so I am not going to Google bathroom camera legality but I’d wager a bet that bathroom cameras aren’t exactly legal.

      • DEFINITELY not legal. You have to get consent to film someone (sign a release) especially an individual normally. On top of that this is in the privacy of a bathroom. Which is sick.
        Doesn’t so much apply to a crowd of people if you were say filming a street corner as your not focusing on any one person.

        • pablo .raw

          You don’t need a consent signature if the person is filmed or photographed in public space (there are a couple of exceptions to this). Bathrooms have locks because there is an expectation of privacy and that makes a difference.

        • Having been in a bathroom, and found a used needle on the ground, I’d say there are other reasons to have a camara in a bathroom. But I don’t know the legal logistics, just have an opinion.

  • Hey, it wasn’t ME this time!

  • Ew, it was hopefully the manager being a perv and not some weird Starbucks policy to film people on the toilet.

  • Shenanigans. If people were concerned about their dignity they wouldn’t be at a Starbucks to begin with.

  • He is suing for 1 million dollars. There could be just a smidgen of a chance here that this is a scam by the alleged victim.

    • Even if some perv installed this (and not the dad), it still would seem like a scam to sue for $1M for over-the-top “emotional distress”. It’s not like some perv out there has said footage (unless it was wireless).

  • It is very common. Privacy is gone, not because of the government but because of technology and our fellow citizens.

  • Chuck Berry went to jail for doing similar things. He had cameras in the women’s bathrooms in some of his clubs. Anywhere where women take their clothes off there is a chance that some perv is going to try and look in. Even ion bathrooms, need to be aware of your surroundings.

  • I don’t believe for a second that a five-year old girl spotted a hidden camera under a bathroom sink in a Starbucks. This is a scam, top to bottom.

    • I can believe it. A camera hidden undera sink is probably obvious to somoene who’s only 3 feet tall.

      • Like a midget, or the person who cleans the bathroom and regularly crouches down? I bet Daddy’s fingerprints will be found on that inoperable camera purchased from Bass Pro, and that he used the bathroom before his precious little pawn daughter. Oh yeah, and a million dollars is a round, dumb redneck figure. He’d ask for a billion if he realized it was actually more.

      • This is single-occupant bathroom, you know, the one’s where the seat faces (in many cases) the sink. Anyone sitting would have a great view of the plumbing, regardless of their standing height.

    • I guess that’s further evidence that no one reads city paper, both HuffPo and WTOP apparently don’t have you on their radar. Speaking of which, PoP shouldn’t be the object of your sigh, WTOP should be.

      It’s too bad you spend so much time worrying about scooping people, you might actually try to write for a relevant venue where scooping would actually mean something.

      • You gotta start somewhere, and with a few years at the City Paper, you might be able to get a job at the Leesburg paper, or the one in Germantown.

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