Investigation continues of Rochester reporter facing invasion of privacy charges
ROCHESTER — Police continue to investigate a Dover man who allegedly had images from a hidden camera found in an office building earlier this month.
Conor Brendan Makem, 45, of 5 West Concord St. in Dover, was charged with one count of falsification of physical evidence and a dozen counts of misdemeanor invasion of privacy.
As Makem was released on bail following his arrest Thursday, his arraignment was rescheduled from Friday to Nov. 25 at 8 a.m. in 7th Circuit Court, Rochester.
Makem, who worked as a reporter for The Rochester Times — which is owned by Foster’s Daily Democrat — for the past decade, was terminated Thursday morning.
On Friday, Capt. Paul Toussaint said police continue to investigate the matter, but no further charges have been filed. He added the affidavit leading to Makem’s arrest has not been made public.
Police found probable cause to investigate child pornography and obscene matter and the interception and disclosure of telecommunications prohibited, according to the affidavits and warrants used to search Makem’s workspace, home and his seized electronic items — including computers, phones, camera and portable storage devices.
As part of the investigation, police allegedly discovered many images of child pornography, obscene material and images taken from a second-floor women’s bathroom at Merchant’s Plaza, on Old Dover Road, near the offices of Foster’s Daily Democrat and The Rochester Times.
On Oct. 7, a woman who noticed an “eraser-sized” camera-like device on the bathroom ceiling spoke to Makem about the item. The woman alleged Makem removed the device, which he claimed to throw into a nearby Dumpster, and told her he would call police, according to court records.
Three days later, police obtained a warrant to seize Makem’s cell phone, a camera, flash drives and some computers from the newspaper office and his apartment in Dover. Although officers searched the Dumpster, the device was not recovered, according to court records.
Falsifying physical evidence is a felony, which could result in time in prison while each count of invasion of privacy is a Class A misdemeanor which could result in a year in jail, if Makem is convicted.