A man who is facing more than 30 criminal charges in Stafford County as the result of an incident in January in which he fell through the ceiling into a women’s locker room won a small legal victory Thursday.
Attorney John Mayoras, who is representing Brian Anthony Joe, recently filed a motion asking Judge Bruce Strickland to forbid Commonwealth’s Attorney Eric Olsen from introducing evidence that images of child pornography were found on Joe’s electronic devices in Prince William County following his arrest in Stafford.
Mayoras argued that the Prince William allegations are not relevant to the Stafford charges and that introducing them would be overly prejudicial to the jurors. Strickland took the request under advisement and Thursday issued a ruling in favor of Mayoras’ request.
Joe, 41, is facing charges in Stafford that include multiple counts of being a Peeping Tom, burglary, filming a nonconsenting minor and producing child pornography. A two-day jury trial is scheduled to start Oct. 6 in Stafford Circuit Court.
Court records and evidence presented at earlier hearings showed that on Jan. 30, Joe fell into the women’s locker room at Onelife Fitness at 315 Garrisonville Road. He was dangling from the ceiling on a makeshift harness system in front of several naked, or partially naked, surprised women.
The evidence showed that Joe, a member of the gym at the time, entered a small bathroom and locked the door. He then used a rope ladder to get into the ceiling, where he had a harness system and a recording device set up.
The setup included the use of a small camera that transmitted images to a cellphone. The prosecution alleges that Joe had engaged in the same behavior multiple times before he was caught.
Police raided Joe’s home in Woodbridge after his arrest and seized hundreds of images of child pornography, along with “upskirt” pictures depicting videos of unsuspecting women made with a hidden camera.
Joe has been in the Rappahannock Regional Jail since his arrest. He is also facing charges in Prince William.
Keith Epps: 540/374-5404