Ex-AOL exec gets jail for nude filming
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.
| January 4, 2011; 4:05 PM ET
Categories: Fairfax, From the Courthouse, Tom Jackman, Updates
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