ROCKLAND, Maine — A 43-year-old man was sentenced Monday to serve five months in prison for secretly videotaping his girlfriend’s 13-year-old daughter while she was naked.
After pleading guilty to three charges of visual sexual aggression against a child under 14 and to three charges of violation of privacy, Frank Bertrand Jr. of Rockland was sentenced to 364 days in prison on each count, with all but five months suspended.
When police interviewed Bertrand in March, he told Knox County Sheriff’s Office Detective Justin Twitchell that “he had been using several different kinds of sexual enhancement and has been having all kinds of feelings because of it. He stated that living in the same house with [the girl] and watching her become a woman has been hard for him,” the report filed in Knox County Superior Court states.
Bertrand had been living with his girlfriend and her then-13-year-old daughter in South Thomaston when he set up a small remote-controlled video camera in the girl’s room, according to the report.
“He stated that he knew what he was doing was wrong …” the report states.
The man told police he had been archiving the footage on DVDs and would print off any still images he liked from the footage. The taping happened over a period of 10 months.
In March 2010 Bertrand’s girlfriend was looking through his backpack for cigarettes, but instead found pictures of her naked daughter, police said. She drove Bertrand to work and her daughter to school before going to the Sheriff’s Office to report what she had found.
Police recovered eight DVDs and 24 photographs. Of the two dozen pictures, 13 were of the girl and the other 11 were of other young females who were naked.
In addition to the five-month sentence, Bertrand was ordered to serve one year of probation and to register on the state’s Sex Offender Registry for 10 years.
In a letter to the court, Bertrand’s psychologist, Karen Klien, argued that Bertrand is not a pedophile.
“All definitions for pedophilia state that the individual’s sexual fantasies must cause distress to the affected individual or impairment of the individual’s ability to function socially or occupationally. Mr. Bertrand is far from impaired.”
The psychologist wrote that Bertrand had expressed his guilt to her in their 51 sessions.