WATERVLIET, N.Y. (NEWS10) — The Appellate Division of State Supreme Court, Third Department, has upheld the conviction of a Watervliet man who was convicted of illicitly taking photos of children in public bathrooms. The Warren County District Attorney said James Hewitt also had his prison sentence of 2 to 6 years upheld.
Hewitt was arrested by the Warren County Sheriff’s Office in October 2019 after police learned of multiple instances where children were photographed without their consent or knowledge. The Albany County District Attorney’s Office said multiple victims were videotaped at the Price Chopper in Watervliet and the Great Escape Theme Park in Queensbury between July 2017 and July 2019. At least one child was videotaped.
Hewitt was convicted of promoting a sexual performance by a child, a felony, in Warren County. Hewitt was prosecuted along with his wife, Valerie Hewitt, who police determined assisted in the scheme to photograph children. She was also convicted.
Hewitt’s counsel for the appeal argued that there were technical errors made in the case by the court before his guilty plea, that Hewitt should have been allowed to withdraw his guilty plea before he was sentenced and that his legal counsel was not effective.
The Appeals Court rejected those arguments, finding no basis to disturb the conviction or sentence.