I-Team: Hidden surveillance camera placed in BCPD women's locker room
Updated: Saturday, August 3 2013, 01:09 AM EDT
BATTLE CREEK, Mich. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) - Newschannel 3 has learned a hidden surveillance camera was placed in the women's locker room of the Battle Creek Police Station.
The video caught a veteran female patrol officer stealing from another officer.
Newschannel 3's I-Team has been investigating this story for weeks.
A three page dismissal report signed by the police chief and 24 year veteran patrol officer Laurie Gillespie lays out a more than two month investigation.
The investigation began after female officers reported theft from the women's locker room.
The document shows a surveillance camera caught the then 50 year old Gillepsie looking through other officer's coats January 15 and 16.
The document shows Gillespie was confronted with the video, she denied stealing. She said "I'm not a thief." She eventually admitted to stealing $20 according to the document.
The women's locker room in the Battle Creek Police station is a place where it's common to change in and out of uniform, and expect a reasonable amount of privacy.
Newschannel 3 reached out to the Calhoun County Prosecutor's Office to ask if this was legal. They referred us to a section in the Michigan penal code showing it is legal, for a peace officer to do this type of surveillance while in the performance of their duties.
The police chief decided not to talk to Newschannel 3 Wednesday but sent us a statement confirming the officer has been terminated:
"At this time the city is unable to comment because the union has filed a grievance that has to go through the litigation process.
In addition, Michigan State Police is investigating Officer Gillespie regarding the alleged criminal aspect of the incident."
Along with the Calhoun County Prosecutor's Office, State Police Detective Chuck Christensen says they're still waiting for police to hand over the evidence.
"In this type of video we would have females view that video and no male officers," said Christensen.
Newschannel 3 also reached out to Gillespie and her lawyer but they were not available to comment Wednesday.