BELLINGHAM, Wash. -- A local swimming instructor is behind bars, facing voyeurism and child pornography charges.
Bellingham police said 53-year-old David Frick secretly video-recorded female employees in a changing room at a local pool.
City officials said Frick had worked at the public pool since 1996 – but he had only recently been video-recording his female co-workers in their private dressing rooms with his cellphone; the last time allegedly happened last week.
“My prime responsibility is public safety so my gut reaction is complete sickness that this has gone on in a facility that the city is operating,” said Bellingham’s mayor, Kelli Linville.
“This is a disconcerting situation for us,” said Bellingham Police Chief Clifford Cook. “The City of Bellingham prides itself on providing quality of service to community but also very much concerned about the safety of our citizens.”
Investigators told Q13 News that Frick used his own cellphone to spy on his female co-workers as they changed into their bathing suits at the Arne Hanna public pool.
Police said for now they don’t have evidence to suggest any of the pool’s customers have been victimized.
“We have no information at this time to indicate that any patrons of the aquatic center were at risk or if he targeted any users of the facility, either adult or children,” said Cook. “We are looking into that just to validate that’s the case.”
The investigation began when Bellingham Police got a tip that Frick had allegedly been trading child pornography images online.
After serving a warrant at Frick’s Lynden home, investigators said that is where they found the videos of this naked co-workers.
“He indicates that he just held them himself, he did not distribute those videos,” said Cook.
Linville said Frick passed a background check when he first began working at the pool in 1996. Frick is now behind bars in lieu of $20,000 bail after being arrested at his Lynden home.
“Just to be clear, he will not be coming back to the aquatic center,” added Linville, saying Frick’s employment with the city would be suspended if he posts bail.
Police are asking the public to come forward if they any questions about the case, or if people think they also may have been spied on.
The city opened a call center that will be open both Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; the number to call is (360) 778-8754.