Burlington County Prosecutor Scott Coffina announced today in a media release that a former Lenape High School teacher was sentenced today to five years in New Jersey state prison for recording upskirt videos and taking photos of female students last year in his classroom and the school’s hallways.
Eric T. Howell, 44, of Maple Shade, pled guilty in March to one count of Endangering the Welfare of a Child (Second Degree). The sentence was handed down in Superior Court by the Hon. James J. Morley, J.S.C.
The investigation revealed that Howell concealed a camera in a coconut water box that was then placed in the side mesh portion of his briefcase. To make the recordings, he would unscrew the cap, walk in close proximity to female students and carry his briefcase in a manner that allowed the camera to point up their skirts or loose-fitting shorts.
Howell’s behavior was brought to the attention of the school administration on May 2, 2017 by an individual who observed him passing behind a female student and extending his arm sideways in an attempt to position the camera under her skirt. School officials contacted police after receiving the information, and were fully cooperative with law enforcement.
The investigation established no evidence that revealed that Howell uploaded or shared the recordings.
“Parents and students have every right to expect that students will be safe from any form of sexual misconduct while they are in school, particularly by their teachers,” Prosecutor Coffina said. “This
defendant betrayed that sacred trust and rightfully is paying a significant price for his actions. I commend the students who immediately reported this behavior to the school administration once it had been
observed, and the administration’s prompt action in response. The investigation into this matter was a direct result of the concern that was shown, and the action that was taken, to make sure that these
criminal acts were addressed.”
Howell was prosecuted by Burlington County Assistant Prosecutor Stephen Eife, supervisor of the BCPO Sexual Assault/Child Abuse Unit. The case was investigated by detectives from the Medford Township Police Department and the Prosecutor’s Office.
The lead investigators were Medford Police Detective Nicole Fellona and BCPO Detective Matthew Delgado.