Peeper slipped camera under Petaluma hotel room doors, police say

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A Berkeley man was arrested Tuesday night, suspected of slipping a tiny video camera under Petaluma hotel room doors to peep.

Officers were called about 6 p.m. to the Sheraton on Baywood Drive, where Javier Martinez, 30, had been seen on his hands and knees looking underneath doors, Petaluma police said Wednesday.

Officers found in his room electronic surveillance equipment, including a small scope camera he slid under a connecting door, Petaluma police Lt. Tim Lyons said. It had been recording for five hours, offering an 8- by 5-foot view.

“When officers walked in he was in the process of recording the adjoining room,” Lyons said.

Officers also found other electronic recording devices, external electronic data storage devices, three fiber‑optic cameras and tools to install cameras. Martinez told police his activities were innocent, and that he’d been inspired by television reality shows. He also said he’d been looking under doors to determine which were corner rooms so he could move into one, Lyons said.

Officers will review the recorded material for any evidence of crimes. Martinez repeatedly has stayed at the south Petaluma hotel, so police suspect there could be more victims.

Martinez was booked into Sonoma County Jail on suspicion of misdemeanor unlawful peeping, but was released about early Wednesday after posting $1,000 bail.

Anyone with information should call detectives at 707‑778‑4372.

You can reach Staff Writer Randi Rossmann at 707‑521-5412 or randi.rossmann@pressdemocrat.com. On Twitter@rossmannreport.

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