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After waiving a preliminary hearing, former Villanova student Tyler Jones, 20, now awaits formal arraignment, set for March 20, on seven charges after police say he admitted  to secretly videotaping three women while they were dressing, later uploading the videos to a pornographic website. 

Jones, who has since posted bail and surrendered his passport, was charged at his preliminary arraignment, Feb. 12, with seven crimes—three accounts of invasion of privacy, design/copy of obscene material, criminal use of a communication facility, dissemination of child pornography and the possession of child pornography.

According to police, the ongoing investigation, in which authorities are still inspecting Jones’ smartphone and laptop, began when a female from New York City contacted the Radnor Police Department.

“The victim called and explained that she had reason to believe that she was in a video uploaded to a porn website,” Lt. Andy Block of the Radnor Police Department said. 

“She explained that she had a friend at the residence of Tyler Jones. She described the unique-looking bathroom; she knew it was her in the video,” Blocj said.

On Dec. 20, investigators learned that along with the female from New York City, 30, two other women appeared in Jones’ videos. 

The videos, taken with Jones’ iPhone in a residence in Switzerland, also featured an 18-year-old and a 17-year-old and have since been removed from the website, according to police. 

“We are the ones who charged him,” Block said, indicating that Radnor Police have the jurisdiction to prosecute and investigate Jones. “He was not charged with any type of international offense. Although he captured the videos in Switzerland, he uploaded them in Pennsylvania.”

The University’s assistant dean of students Ryan Rost was unable to comment on the story, citing confidentiality of student records.

“The University holds its students to a high standard and takes any allegations of wrongdoing seriously,” said Jonathan Gust, director of media relations. “Our students are held accountable for their actions based on the policies set forth by our Code of Student Conduct.”

Regarding Jones’ status as a student, Gust said that he is not currently enrolled at the University.

Jones’ case is not a unique one, Block said. Just as recently as last fall, the Radnor Police Department investigated a similar situation in which a video of two juveniles having sex appeared online after the device used to film the two was stolen. 

“You need to be aware that it is a crime,” Block said of people uploading pornographic pictures of other unsuspecting participants. “With all of the sexting going on these days it is a huge problem. It is an issue to film and upload that kind of stuff whether it is consensual or not.”  

Admitting that it is a difficult situation, Block urged students to be smart with their use of social media and their choice of clothing. He additionally stressed the importance of being aware in both public and private settings.  

 

 

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