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Man arrested after hidden camera found in washroom at Gatineau, Que. elementary school

Gatineau police arrested an 18-year-old man after a hidden camera was discovered in the girls' washroom at an elementary school.

Police received a call from staff at l’école l'Oiseau Bleu on Nelligan Street just after 10 a.m. Thursday about a camera found in the ceiling of the washroom, police said in a statement.

Officers seized the camera, which will be examined by investigators.

A suspect was arrested Thursday evening.

"The suspect lives in the area of ​​l’école l'Oiseau Bleuand and is said to be a former student who attended the establishment," police said in a statement Friday morning, adding the suspect is not an employee at the school.

Charges of voyeurism, breaking and entering and attempted production of child pornography have been filed with the Directeur des poursuites criminelles et pénales, according to police.

It's not known how long the camera had been in the school's washroom. Police say someone using the washroom on Thursday discovered the camera.

"Somebody who went into the washroom noticed a hole in the ceiling and they notified the authorities on scene," Const. Patrick Kenney said.

"That’s where they noticed there was a camera above the removable (tile in the) ceiling. Immediately they called the police and that is when the object was seized."

Kenney says investigators examined the camera and were, "able to identify and locate the subject responsible for the camera."

Police say there is no indication that any images that may have been recorded by the camera were viewed or shared.

"It was not advanced technology," Kenney told CTV News Ottawa, adding the device was not accessible by WiFi.

"It leads us to believe that all of the images stayed on the camera until police took possession of them."

Officers and school staff searched the school to ensure there are no other cameras installed at l’école l'Oiseau Bleu. Police say officers remain in close communication with the school as the investigation continues.

In a letter to parents, the Centre de services scolaire des Draveurs said the camera was discovered in a girls' washroom, and the washroom was "immediately sealed off" and police were called.

Parents and students were shocked to learn a camera was found in the school's washroom.

"I feel so bad, so bad," Elise Berheen said Friday morning. "I can't imagine something like that is happening to our child; it's our community."

The school board says psychological support is available at the school for students.

Last month, police investigated a fire in the washroom of l’école l'Oiseau Bleu. Police say two students under the age of 12 were identified as being responsible for starting the fire, but would not face charges.

"The two students, accompanied by their parents, were met by the investigators in order to make them aware of the dangers and the various possible consequences of their actions," police said in a statement.

With files from CTV News Ottawa's Leah Larocque Top Stories


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