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Fredericksburg photographer pleads guilty to secretly taping nude women.
BY JIM HALL
Craig Faulkner had a photo studio in his home where women went for professional glamour shots.
What the women didn't realize was that Faulkner was also filming them while they were nude in his changing room. Those pictures were for his private collection.
The 59-year-old Fredericksburg resident yesterday pleaded guilty to a variety of charges associated with the secret taping.
Investigators would later take the legal photos he took of the women and match them with the illegal ones from the dressing room. In all, 17 women were identified, customers who visited his studio over an 18-month period.
At least one of the women was photographed more than once. Another of the victims was 16 years old, so the charges against him included two felonies: one count of the possession of child pornography and one count of the unlawful filming of a minor who was nude.
Faulkner entered Alford pleas to the felonies, acknowledging that if his case had gone to court, the prosecution had sufficient evidence to convict him.
He also pleaded guilty to 18 misdemeanor counts of the unlawful filming of another who was nude, and one misdemeanor count of operating an unlicensed business.
He faces prison sentences of up to five years each for the felony charges, and up to 12 months each for the misdemeanor charges. The convictions also carry the possibility of fines.
Faulkner's secret videotaping came to an end earlier this year, when two women who were there for a bikini shoot discovered an operating camera in the changing room. The women reported the incident to city police.
Prosecutor Travis Bird said during a hearing in Fredericksburg Circuit Court this morning that when police confronted Faulkner, he told them he "threw the camera in the river."
Police returned to his home with search warrants and seized tapes, a computer, hard drives, a camera and a phone. The FBI helped to analyze the material, Bird said.
Bird also said that Faulkner has reimbursed the victims the money they paid for the photo shoots. Prosecutors also will make available to them the legally made pictures. The illegal pictures will be destroyed, he said.
Because of the felony convictions, Faulkner's bond was revoked, and he was taken from the courtroom to jail. He will be sentenced on Jan. 17.
Jim Hall: 540/374-5433