Local News

Women secretly videotaped at Johnston hospital

Posted July 23, 2008 3:50 p.m. EDT

— A retired Johnston Memorial Hospital pharmacist has been charged with secretly videotaping female co-workers over several years, police said Wednesday.

Ben Pell, 58, of Smithfield, was charged with 15 counts of secret peeping and was released on a $25,000 bond.

Pell was arrested in April after a Smithfield woman reported a prowler outside her home and police found him nearby dressed in black and carrying a video camera.

After his arrest, Pell handed over more than 240 videotapes to police, telling officers he had been taping women for years at Johnston Memorial, a health club and the beach.

Pell retired from Johnston Memorial in 2005, but continued to work part-time at the hospital until his arrest.

Officers reviewed the videos and determined 15 Johnston Memorial employees were secretly taped over a four- to five-year period in a hospital restroom, police said.