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Posted at 4:05 PM ET, 01/ 4/2011

Ex-AOL exec gets jail for nude filming

By Tom Jackman
Tom Jackman

A former executive and founding employee of America Online, facing a trial in circuit court Tuesday for secretly filming teenagers undressing in his house, quietly admitted his guilt last month and served five days in the Fairfax County jail.

Craig D. Dykstra, 52, of Centreville, was arrested on June 7, two days after hosting a pool party for Westfield High School graduates after their prom. On June 5, according to a Fairfax police affidavit, a teenage boy and girl who were changing in a room inside Dykstra's house found a small digital video camera hanging on a pair of shorts, actively recording them. The boy removed the camera and took it to his parents.

Fairfax Detective Nickolas Boffi wrote that he viewed video from the camera and saw a man initially positioning the camera, and then eight different teens changing in the room, including a girl who was completely naked.

Dykstra was charged with a misdemeanor of filming an unconsenting nude person. In July, he went to trial in General District Court where video from the camera was shown and Judge Mark Simmons found him guilty. Simmons sentenced Dykstra to 10 days in jail, but Dykstra immediately appealed to circuit court.

The case was continued several times, and prosecutors even moved to revoke Dykstra's bond after he had contact with the victim's family on Facebook. But on Dec. 6, with the trial looming, Dykstra withdrew his appeal and agreed to serve his 10 days. He also was placed on a year's probation and ordered to pay $187 in court costs.

Prisoners convicted of misdemeanors serve only half their time in county jails in Virginia. Dykstra was released on Dec. 11, Fairfax Sheriff's Lt. Sonny Cachuela said.

Dickson Young, Dykstra's lawyer, said Dykstra withdrew his appeal because "he didn't want to put his family and the people at the party through any more turmoil as a result of this situation, which he deeply regrets." Though police seized a dozen computers, seven cameras and various data storage units, Young said he was unaware of any other illicit material found by police.

By Tom Jackman  | January 4, 2011; 4:05 PM ET
Categories:  Fairfax, From the Courthouse, Tom Jackman, Updates  
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Comments

There is something missing from this article. How did this man actually know these kids? Was he a teacher? Was he related to one of them? If he was neither of those, why was he hosting a pool party for these kids? That alone seems suspicious and should have raised a red flag. I'm glad the kids found his camera, but I can't believe this man only served five days in jail.

Posted by: CAmira5 | January 4, 2011 5:17 PM | Report abuse

DYKSTRA IS A PARENT AT THE SCHOOL AND A BIG $$$ SUPPORTER !
This school has so many illnesses. Poor kids.

But there is a bright light in this story. The young man who had the sense to take the camera when he and his friends found it and then take it to his parents then police. KUDOS to this bright young man and his parents ! Doing something right in a very sad place.

Posted by: Responsiblecitizen2 | January 4, 2011 6:02 PM | Report abuse

The school: Westfield High School in Chantilly and Centreville, Fairfax County

Posted by: Responsiblecitizen2 | January 4, 2011 6:09 PM | Report abuse

Being nude is natural and nice. Now more and more people be interested in being nude and being nudists. And I always check the celebrities' nude photos on a nudist site called nudistconnect.com. Maybe they are nudists, or interested in being a nudist

Posted by: jesscica | January 4, 2011 8:32 PM | Report abuse

Being nude is natural and nice. Now more and more people be interested in being nude and being nudists. And I always check the celebrities' nude photos on a nudist site called nudistconnect.com. Maybe they are nudists, or interested in being a nudist

Posted by: jesscica | January 4, 2011 8:39 PM | Report abuse

This is afterall Westfield High, aka Heroin High. Heroin and the Gospel, yes sir. That is Westfield.

Posted by: DCObserver1 | January 4, 2011 8:53 PM | Report abuse

This is afterall Westfield High, aka Heroin High. Heroin and the Gospel, yes sir. That is Westfield.

Posted by: DCObserver1 | January 4, 2011 8:54 PM | Report abuse

Ok... this says he was trying to film boys and girls... not men and women. Only 10 days for secrectly recording minors???

The laws sure do change for the rich huh...

Posted by: seendadream | January 5, 2011 9:20 AM | Report abuse

Why wasn't he charged with manufacturing child pornography? That would have gotten him at least 10 years in prison.

Posted by: buffysummers | January 5, 2011 9:34 AM | Report abuse

Wow...that's pretty sceavy. Why would he risk the embarrassment to his family? There are more than enough sites on the internet for that if its what turns your crank.
My guess is he'll be receiving some divorce papers any day now...

Posted by: BigDaddy651 | January 5, 2011 10:27 AM | Report abuse

Were the people being recorded minors or adults? It sounds like they were all over 18 which seems to change the charges somewhat. Still, does this also come with the penalty of having to register as a convicted sex offender (RSO) or is that reserved for felony convictions? I guess that admitting guilt will make the civil actions much easier to prove.

Posted by: AlligatorArms | January 5, 2011 11:00 AM | Report abuse

Why wasn't he charged with manufacturing child pornography? That would have gotten him at least 10 years in prison.

Posted by: buffysummers | January 5, 2011 9:34 AM

a video of anyone simply changing clothes would not be pornography.
Pornography is more then simple nudity, there has to be graphic sexual activity.
he was secretly videotaping a changing area, (not a place where sex would be known to occur) so you can't reasonably infer an intent to video sexual activity amongst minors.

generally, i think prosecutors over use pornography charges and am glad in this case they didn't even try that.

Posted by: MarilynManson | January 5, 2011 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Why does he not have to registar as a sex offender. 5 days, please. it seems money does fix things.

Posted by: ggant | January 5, 2011 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Why does he not have to registar as a sex offender. 5 days, please. it seems money does fix things.

Posted by: ggant | January 5, 2011 12:14 PM | Report abuse

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