SALT LAKE CITY — Criminal charges were filed Thursday against a Salt Lake landlord accused of putting hidden cameras in his tenants’ rooms and recording them.
Larry S. Phillips, 69, of Salt Lake City — who is already a registered sex offender from a previous conviction — is charged in 3rd District Court with four counts of burglary, a second-degree felony; and nine counts of voyeurism, a class A misdemeanor,
Police believe Phillips has secretly recorded at least 13 people over the past several years at his house and at other properties.
“Most of the videos are recordings of the male tenants living in the home at the time they were recorded. There are also videos of females, visitors and even LDS missionaries,” a police affidavit states.
Charging documents say Phillips’ crimes date back to at least 2017.
The investigation began when two men renting rooms in Phillips’ home, 1906 E. St. Marys Drive, each found hidden cameras in their bedrooms that were designed to look like iPhone charger blocks, according to charging documents.
On Sept. 10, a SWAT team served a search warrant on Phillips’ house and seized multiple electronic devices.
“A search of the devices located 320 videos of the bathrooms, bedrooms and private bedrooms being rented by the victims, which included the victims naked or engaged in sexual conduct,” the charges state.
Investigators say some of the videos also recorded Phillips setting up the hidden cameras and adjusting the camera angles.
Additionally, videos were also discovered that were recorded at two places owned by one of Phillips’ friends, a public locker room and a public art class, according to the charges.
When police showed one of the victims who had recently rented a room from Philips what the clandestine camera looked like, he stated, “There was always one in the bathroom. That’s outrageous. ... That’s freaking annoying,” the charges say.
Another man told police that he would unplug the “little black things” he found in the outlets his room, but would later find that someone had plugged them back in. He said he worried at the time they might be cameras.
After Phillips was arrested on Monday, he told police that he had four cameras in his house and two in an art studio, but claimed they were for security purposes, according to the charges.
Phillips was convicted in 2015 of two counts of forcible sex abuse for an incident that happened in St. George in 2002 and he is required to register with the Utah Sex Offender and Kidnap Registry due to that conviction.