Brighton Man Arrested for Photographing Women in Mugar
Suspect may face two-and-a-half-year sentence
Boston University police arrested a 37-year-old man on the third floor of Mugar Memorial Library Monday night after he was seen taking pictures of female students. Scott Paré, deputy director of public safety and BU Police Department deputy chief, says Michael Lydon, 37, of Brighton, was taken into custody after police received a call from two students. Lydon was charged with secret photo, video, or electronic surveillance, a misdemeanor punishable by up to two and a half years in jail and a fine of $5,000. He pleaded not guilty Tuesday in Roxbury District Court and was released on his own recognizance.
“One of the students who tipped us off had recently attended a Public Safety Week event,” Paré says. “She knew all about the text (Tip 411) messaging, and she knew the phone number. She gave an excellent description of the suspect.”
The description allowed plainclothes police—who were already posted in the library to combat the upswing in laptop thefts that often accompanies final exams—to identify the suspect “within a couple of minutes” of the call, Paré says.
Lydon, who is not affiliated with Boston University, was escorted from the library’s third floor to the lobby, where he turned his phone over to police officers, who observed several photos of what Detective Lieutenant Peter DiDomenica describes as “an inappropriate area of women’s bodies.”
Paré says police do not consider Lydon a suspect in a recent string of incidents in the Ashford Street area in which women were pushed to the ground and photographed. “The description of the suspect in those incidents is not even close to this guy,” he says. “In those cases we are looking for a 22-year-old Hispanic man.”
Lindsay Korn (CAS’13) says she thinks the situation was handled well. “But,” she says, “only BU faculty and students should be allowed to enter Mugar so that this type of situation won’t happen again.”
“I’m not wary of Mugar,” says Kaitlyn Hall (CAS’13), who was heartened by the police response. “This is the first dangerous experience that I’ve heard of happening there in the last four years, and it sounds like BU handled it quickly and well.”
Kavita Patel (SMG’13) found the incident creepy. “It’s not like I won’t work at Mugar now,” she says, “but it’s definitely very strange. Security should be higher in the library too, because it’s such an easy way to target a large group of students, especially during finals.”
Contacted by email, Poorva Bhade (CAS’13) responded with a note saying, “I’m here now and some guy is walking around telling the men to put away their phones even if they are just studying, so it was a swift response, but I don’t know if telling everyone to put away their phones is reasonable.”
Lydon is scheduled to return to court on February 20, 2013, for a pretrial hearing.58 Comments