Attorney Hid Cameras In Encino Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf Bathrooms, Lawsuit Says
A lawsuit filed today alleges that an attorney planted cameras that recorded customers inside the restroom of not one but two Encino Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf locations.Roderick Smith claims in the lawsuit that a blue blinking light led him to a camera hidden aimed at the toilet inside an Encino Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, according to City News Service. He told management, but within a week he found another camera hidden in the exact same spot underneath a sink.
Smith says a Coffee Bean staffer later told him that corporate management wanted to conceal the discovery of the cameras and told staffers not to discuss it with staff or customers, according to Law360. Smith also claims that employees took down the mug shots of the suspect that police put up before he was apprehended.
Attorney Mark Daniel Wenzel was arrested and charged in connection with the case while he was at a second Coffee Bean location in Encino. He was allegedly caught, because his cameras captured his face as he installed the cameras. Wenzel's legal office s are in between the two locations.
The lawsuit, which names Wenzel as well as Coffee Bean & Tean Leaf management, alleges invasion of privacy, negligence and intentional infliction of emotional distress, according to CNS. Smith claims that if Coffee Bean's management and employees properly inspected and maintained its restrooms, he never would have had to worry about videotaped.
"It is the responsibility of all retailers to protect their customers' right to privacy in a dressing room or bathroom," said Smith's lead attorney Brian Kabateck.
Smith is seeking unspecified damages as well as other potential plaintiffs to join him in the suit.
Neither Wenzel nor Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf offered comments to CNS and Law360.