Friday, July 19, 2024

Voyeurism case proceeds against Coeur d'Alene man

Staff Writer | July 10, 2024 1:00 AM

COEUR d’ALENE — The case of a man accused of recording nude videos of children and adults without their knowledge has been referred to the district court for further action. 

Michael S. Wall, 51, of Coeur d’Alene, faces 10 counts of sexual exploitation of a child by possession of sexually exploitative material and seven counts of video voyeurism by use of a device. 

The Idaho Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force began investigating Wall after a cloud storage company reported that a user, later identified as Wall, had uploaded child sexual abuse material to his account. 

Court records indicate that a search of Wall’s cloud storage account yielded more than 400 files containing child sexual abuse material, as well as more than 200 files “that appeared to be self-produced ‘up-skirt’ type videos” of children and adults, dating back as far as 2006. 

Some of the videos appeared to be recorded at Wall’s workplace, Willamette Valley Bank in Coeur d’Alene, where he was employed as a loan officer, according to court records. 

Police arrested Wall in June on a $500,000 warrant. He later posted bail. As a condition of his release, he is forbidden from having contact with any person under the age of 18 or knowingly coming within 10 feet of any minor. 

Wall waived his right to a preliminary hearing this week and the case was bound over to the district court for arraignment and trial. He is expected to enter a plea at a later date. 

Prosecutors allege Wall secretly placed recording devices in guest bathrooms and other places “where a person would have a reasonable expectation of privacy,” doing so in multiple locations in Kootenai and Bonner counties between 2020 and 2024. These devices captured videos of adults and children bathing or in states of undress, according to court records. 

A motion-activated device recorded approximately 208 separate video files from what appeared to be a bedroom or bathroom closet in a family’s home, court records said. 

Wall allegedly recorded and photographed nude men in the showers at Peak Fitness in Coeur d’Alene. 

Sexual exploitation of a child by possession of sexually exploitative material is punishable by up to 10 years in prison, while video voyeurism carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison.