Police investigate nearly 200 videos showing job applicants und

Saturday, March 27, 2004

WEST COVINA, Calif. -- Nearly 200 women who applied for jobs at a Hooters restaurant were secretly videotaped in a trailer while they undressed to put on a Hooters uniform, police said.

Authorities raided the trailer last month and seized a computer that held 180 digital videos of the women, ages 17-25, Lt. Mark Dettor said.

"None of us suspected we would find that many videos, and we are dealing with victims who are shocked and feel betrayed," he said.

Hooters is a national chain known for its scantily clad waitresses, who wear low-cut tank tops and shorts. The restaurant in West Covina, about 18 miles outside of Los Angeles, was scheduled to open in April.

No charges have been filed, Sandi Gibbons, a spokeswoman for the Los Angeles County district attorney, said Friday.

Justin Johl, a lawyer for Hooters, said the company was outraged and was conducting its own investigation.

Police also searched the home of Juan Aponte, 32, a former manager for a Hooters in Pasadena. He has not been arrested or charged, and his lawyer, Brian Michaels, declined to comment on the investigation.

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