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Contractor accused of planting camera in woman’s shower

A contractor hid a camera inside a customer’s bathroom to record video of her while she showered, Amherst police said Saturday.

Kevin R. Eckert, 60, was arrested Saturday at his home on Tonawanda Creek Road in the Town of Lockport by Amherst Detective Robert Cunningham and charged with two counts of second-degree unlawful surveillance, which is a felony.

Eckert also faces misdemeanor stalking charges.

The North Amherst woman, who is in her 30s, was stepping out of the shower early Friday morning when she noticed something peculiar, said Amherst Detective Lt. Rick Walter.

“As she got out of the shower, she happens to look down at the air return vent at the base of the vanity on the floor and notices a lens,” Walter said. “She gets her husband, they take off the grill, find the camera and call police.”

“The suspect had actually placed there what’s commonly referred to as a trail camera,” Walter said. “It’s very popular for deer hunters because it’s motion activated. So whenever she would get in the shower, it would activate.”

Police went to Eckert’s home Saturday morning to interview him and execute a search warrant signed by Amherst Town Justice Kara Buscaglia.

“We did recover some items we’re interested in,” Walter said.

Walter would not comment on how long the camera was hidden in the vent, but said the family has hired Eckert numerous times to do odd jobs around the house.

“He was kind of a guy that worked by word of mouth,” Walter said. “He did pretty good business.”

Did Eckert spy on other customers?

“We’re looking into that possibility,” Walter said, “but at this point, it’s only a possibility that there may be more.”

Anyone who hired Eckert in the past and believes he acted suspiciously when in their home is asked to call Amherst police at 689-1343.