DENVER (CBS4)– A former Denver Fire Department lieutenant has been arrested for invasion of privacy for sexual gratification and tampering with physical evidence after investigators say he planted a hidden camera in the room of a female firefighter. He is accused of then attempted to destroy evidence after the concealed camera was found.
Police arrested Daniel Flesner, 47, Wednesday night in connection with the incident that was uncovered at Denver Fire Station 9 last weekend. Police released the arrest affidavit on Friday.
It states that on March 30, a female firefighter was in her room at the firehouse reading when someone passed by and spoke to her. She said a few second later, she heard her own voice repeat what she had just said.
She searched her room and found what looked like a cellphone charger that actually houses a hidden camera, which was aimed at the area where she changes her clothes.
She said she reported what she found to her supervisor, Flesner, “who advised her it would be okay to take a day before she decided what she was going to do about the device being in her room.”
The female firefighter contacted another member of the department to get another opinion. When they returned to Flesner, they said they found him using a pin to tamper with the SD card inside the camera.
Flesner later “admitted to placing the camera device” but said, “that it was meant to be a joke and that he had purchased the camera to keep an eye on his garage, but that he did not know it recorded.”
The motion activated camera is capable of transmitting video directly to a cellphone.
Flesner was suspended on March 31 and resigned later.
Police investigators say when they searched the SD card, they found a single video from the evening of March 30 which showed the female firefighter entering her bedroom and changing her clothes. There were other videos and pictures deleted from the card from February 1, nearly two months earlier, that were preserved which showed the room of the victim and pictures of the woman in her room.
During the weekend, but after the camera had been discovered, police say Flesner sent a text message to his collegues saying, “Hey gang. So, so sorry. Prank gone wrong. Love you guys.”
Flesner is being held without bond and declined an interview request from CBS4.
Denver Fire Captain Greg Pixley, a spokesman for the department, said the incident and behavior is “not in the character or spirit of the Denver Fire Department.”