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Monroe County Sheriff's Office compiling client list after camera was found in Close School of Music bathroom

Berkeley Brean
Created: December 09, 2019 09:58 PM

PARMA, N.Y. (WHEC) — A music teacher is in jail tonight after the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office says it found a camera hidden in the music school’s bathroom. 

Philip Close is charged with unlawful surveillance. He was arrested Thursday. 

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The Close School of Music, on West Ridge Road in Parma, is closed now. 

The sheriff’s office says it found multiple cameras at the school and at the owner’s home in Rochester.

The sheriff wants to hear from parents so they can figure out how many victims they might have.

Parents like Tammy Paul.

She did not want to show her face on camera. 

Two of her children are students here. 

Her son got lessons from the teacher arrested. 

Brean: “You know about the arrest what are you thinking right now? What are you worried about?”

Tammy Paul, parent: “The impact it has on my children. You want to trust people. I think we’re now at a time where these people who are in positions that are putting kids in vulnerable places that this is a little disturbing.”

The sheriff’s office says the camera in the bathroom was found by a parent last Thursday. 

Close was arrested that night. 

Sergeant Michael Thomas was asked if other people will get arrested. 

Sgt. Michael Thomas: “There’s a lot of evidence to sift through. It’s hard to say.”

Brean: “How many victims do you think you’ll be out there?

Sgt. Michael Thomas: We don’t know. We don’t know. The school has been open since 2016. Sounds like there’s around 80 to 100 current students at the school. So we believe the number could be significant.”

The sheriff’s office says Close gave private lessons at his home in Rochester too.

They found “multiple” cameras at his home and business. 

Now they have to figure out which ones were for security and music lessons, and which one or ones, they say, were used to record children illegally.

So if you or your children are or were students at Close School of Music or Philip Close please call 585-753-4175.

That’s the records unit at the sheriff’s office. 

They will ask a couple basic questions and then you may be contacted by an investigator. 

The sheriff is trying to compile a client list to help investigators understand how many victims they might be dealing with. 


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