Shepherd Snyder Published

West Virginia State Police Sees Second Lawsuit Notice From Victims Of Alleged Hidden Camera

Large police sign with building in background
West Virginia State Police Academy in Dunbar.
Randy Yohe/West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Another notice to sue the West Virginia State Police has been filed over a camera hidden in the State Police Academy’s women’s locker room.

The notice comes from Winfield-based attorney David Moye. He intends to sue the agency on behalf of five female plaintiffs who were training at the academy, concerned over possible exposure during the time the recording device was placed.

The letter gives the state government the mandatory 30 days notice of intent to file a lawsuit.

Both Moye’s law firm and the West Virginia State Police were unable to comment directly on the notice, but both groups confirmed with West Virginia Public Broadcasting that the notice itself had been filed.

This is the second such notice for intent. Wheeling attorney Teresa Toriseva sent a similar letter on behalf of three other women late last March. Toriseva’s list has grown to at least 20 clients.

Both notices come after a state Department of Homeland Security investigation revealed an unnamed senior state trooper placed the camera sometime before March 2016. The camera wasn’t discovered until after the trooper’s death. The investigation also found that other troopers destroyed evidence in the form of a thumb drive containing video from the camera.

Interim State Police Superintendent Jack Chambers has said he will determine who may have been victimized. A letter from Chambers sent to West Virginia Public Broadcasting last month said all victims identified will be offered counseling and therapy services, and that the Department of Homeland Security is in the process of hiring an independent ombudsman with experience in counseling.

“We are working with Marshall University Health,” Maj. Jim Mitchell, chief of staff services for the state police, said. “We are currently still in negotiations with them to be able to provide any kind of professional assistance, aid or help to any potential victims.”

Most recently, during an interim legislative meeting Monday, Chambers told the Joint Standing Committee on Finance that an internal investigation is moving toward resolution

Toriseva Law is an underwriter of West Virginia Public Broadcasting.