Archive for Wednesday, October 9, 2002

Jail ordered in Ottawa bathroom videotaping

October 9, 2002


— A Lawrence man will serve 60 days in jail and spend the next two years on probation for videotaping women in a restaurant bathroom.

During a hearing Tuesday in Franklin County District Court, Senior Judge Robert Jones also ordered Darrin A. Votaw, 32, to complete 100 hours of community service.

Last week, Votaw pleaded no contest to five misdemeanor counts of eavesdropping in a plea agreement reached with the Franklin County Attorney's Office. Another 10 counts of eavesdropping were dismissed.

Votaw was arrested in February by Ottawa Police after they received information about videotaping in the women's restroom at G. Willikers Bar and Deli, 306 Main St., in Ottawa. During a search of the restaurant, police found a hidden video camera in the restroom; police also obtained a tape during their investigation.

Votaw was a part-owner of the restaurant at the time.

Many of the women who were named as victims in the charges worked at the restaurant. They quit their jobs upon learning of the videotaping.

Jones, a retired judge from Johnson County brought in to hear the case, initially sentenced Votaw to a year in the county jail on each of the five counts. Three of them would have been served consecutively and two concurrently. Jones then suspended the sentences.

If Votaw violates his probation, he still could serve the longer jail sentences. He will begin serving the 60 days on Jan. 2.

Votaw also must undergo a sex offender evaluation to be followed by treatment.

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