ARCADIA — Police jailed a man Wednesday on suspicion of snapping photographs up a young girl’s skirt at the Westfield Santa Anita Shopping Center, authorities said Friday.
Aaron D. Koniak, 35, of Encino, was booked on suspicion of a misdemeanor charge of invasion of privacy with a camera after being captured by a good Samaritan, Arcadia police Sgt. Tom Le Veque said in a written statement.
An 11-year-old girl was shopping with her mother at a kiosk inside the mall about 6:30 p.m. when the incident occurred, the sergeant said.
“A witness noticed the suspect standing very close to the victim and watched the suspect lean over and hold what appeared to be a camera below the girl’s skirt line,” he said.
The witness immediately told the mother what was going on, and the mother confronted Koniak, who tried to run away, police said.
“The mother yelled and chased after the suspect where another bystander detained him,” Le Veque said.
Police arrived and detained Koniak, he said. A “smartphone” was recovered. “Evidence was found on the phone supporting witness accounts of the incident.”
“Based on evidence and suspect statements, we believe that there are potentially additional victims at other area shopping centers,” the sergeant said.
Anyone with information is asked to call Arcadia Police detectives at 626-574-5160.
According to sheriff’s booking records, Koniak was released from jail late Wednesday after posting $25,000 bail.
*PHOTO of Aaron Koniak courtesy of the Arcadia Police Department