A man who said he took pictures up women’s skirts because he was bored has been banned from having cameras in public places.
Christopher Cole targeted women in supermarkets over a 10-month period, making at least 59 videos, 27 of which showed women’s backsides.
The true number could be higher after he admitted that he deleted some footage once he’d watched it.
He was caught at Asda in Blyth, Northumberland, when a woman reported him to a security guard.
Since his crimes came to light Cole has lost his job.
However, he was spared jail after admitting outraging public decency and was instead given a three-year community order at South East Northumberland Magistrates’ Court.
The ban prevents him from possessing a camera, including on a mobile phone, in shops, on public transports and in other public places.
District Judge Bernard Begley said Cole had shown ‘very little’ victim empathy. He added: ‘You’re an intelligent man, I hope you will learn from this experience.
‘You have already lost your employment but there is nothing I can do about that – that’s a natural consequence of what’s happened here.’
When he was arrested in July and admitted to police that he’d been capturing footage on a camera in his motorbike helmet since September 2016.
He told police: ‘Boredom set in and I did it to see what I would get. Initially, I did it to see if I could get up-skirt shots of attractive females.’
He said that he got ‘some sexual gratification’ and defended it saying he was having marital problems.
More: Crime news
Stewart Hay, defending him, said: ‘He’s an intelligent man. He’s got a degree and he was doing a PhD at university. There were problems there and there was some mental health issues.
‘His job has now been lost. This man was in the newspapers and, as a result, he’s lost his job.
‘This is a man who is 38-years-old with no previous convictions and he’s done something bizarre. There must be a mental health aspect to what he’s done.’
Cole was made subject of the Criminal Behaviour Order for three years and must pay £85 costs and an £85 victim surcharge.