A 32-year-old man who taught taekwondo in Colorado for not less than a decade was sentenced to 50 years for clandestinely filming children in changing rooms and accumulating “hundreds of thousands” of images and movies, authorities stated.
Erik Chen pleaded guilty to 3 felony counts of sexual exploitation of a kid in March and was sentenced by Douglas County District Judge Patricia Herron Sept. 15, in response to a press launch from the workplace of District Attorney John Kellner.
Han Won Lee, who has operated martial arts facilities in the realm for 27 years, advised Fox News Digital Tuesday he had “no idea” his worker of 10 years was videotaping their college students, calling the invention “completely devastating.”
“My intention is to protect my students. What he did is absolutely despicable,” he added. “I tried to do best for the community, tried to teach the kids, and then something like this happened.”
Initially, per an arrest affidavit obtained by Fox News Digital, Chen was charged with 12 counts of manufacturing sexually illicit materials of children, 12 counts for possession of these movies, illegal sexual contact for sexual gratification, enticement of a kid, legal makes an attempt at enticement of and sexual exploitation of a kid and invasion of privateness for sexual gratification.
A father advised police in February 2021 that his two daughters noticed Chen’s telephone recording them whereas they have been nude in the Lone Tree Recreation Center‘s changing room. The ladies advised investigators they’d deleted the movies. Although an incident report was taken, there was not sufficient possible trigger to arrest Chen.
But the Castle Rock Police reopened their investigation 4 months later when a therapist advised them one in all her younger purchasers advised her that Chen recorded them in the recreation middle’s restroom in 2020.
At summer season camps run by Chen for Han Lee’s Taekwondo Center, the place college students would take classes and swim, police realized that the instructor would usually depart his backpack in changing rooms and loos, inserting a recording cellphone in its facet pocket, per the district legal professional’s launch.
Computers, DVDs and CDs containing footage of children between 8 and 12 have been seized from Chen’s residence in August 2021. According to the arrest affidavit, roughly 200,000 photographs and “well over 1,000” movies that includes youngster sexual abuse materials — some obtained on-line and others self-recorded — have been discovered.
“There are a small portion of images that show males, but approximately 90 percent of the images show young females, either nude or engaged in a sexual act,” the affidavit stated.
“In addition to the hundreds of thousands of pornographic images of young children, detectives discovered more than a half dozen videos Chen took in local bathrooms or locker rooms where young girls and one boy are seen changing clothes,” the press launch states. “Chen is also visible on some of the videos setting up the phone to record.”
Lee fired Chen after first studying of his recordings, in response to the arrest affidavit.
“He was clean. We did a background check on him,” Lee stated. “I discovered through a student and then, when I called parents, [they] said [they] were going to call police.
“He did a foul factor, and he’ll serve jail time. It’s a horrible factor, what he did. I hope that might by no means occur to anybody once more.”
His Aurora location, where Chen worked, is permanently closed. Lee said he has no intention of reopening that center. Some group lessons, he said, are still ongoing at other locations.
“Visitors are down, however that is OK. That’s the best way it goes,” Lee said. “I’m glad that nothing additional occurred.
“I feel terrible. I don’t want to put myself into that situation again by hiring a lot of instructors.”
Upon Chen’s launch, he will probably be registered as a intercourse offender for all times.
“I’m proud of these victims for having the courage to speak up and tell a trusted adult about what happened,” Kellner stated. “By coming forward, these young girls likely saved many others from being victimized by this defendant. Our families should feel safer knowing he will no longer be around our children for a very long time.”