Published November 29, 2012
Ex-employee gets 10 days for filming actress at PlayhouseJEREMY PAWLOSKI
A former Capital Playhouse employee was sentenced to 10 days in jail Thursday for secretly filming a young actress as she undressed. Joseph Sartori, 25, expressed remorse when he addressed Thurston County Superior Court Judge James Dixon. Sartori, who spoke about “the relationship I’ve developed with Christ” since being charged, also must register as a sex offender. “I’ve spent hours and days and weeks in torment over what I’ve done,” he said, adding that the pain of not being able to change the past is “almost unbearable.” “I wish I could make things right,” Sartori said. Dixon sentenced Sartori to 40 days in jail for his felony voyeurism conviction, with 30 days suspended. Sartori must spend those 30 days doing community service instead. Olympia police arrested Sartori on March 1, after the actress discovered “disturbing” images of herself on Sartori’s computer. The actress and a Playhouse employee later found a small camera in the dressing room, along with a memory card. Sartori initially told police he had bought the camera for security and to “monitor the cleaning crew,” court papers state. He later told an officer he had put the camera there “to satisfy a curiosity” about the actress and admitted that the images of her aroused him, according to court papers. Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Joe Jackson had recommended that Sartori serve 60 days in jail. As an offender with no prior criminal history, Sartori’s standard sentencing range was zero to 90 days in jail. Dixon spoke at length about why sentenced Sartori to the low end of the standard range. He called Sartori’s case difficult, adding that while the community might look at someone convicted of voyeurism as deviant, “I submit that Mr. Sartori does not fit that mold.” Dixon said he recognizes that oppressive working conditions at the Playhouse contributed to Sartori’s mental state, believes Sartori is truly remorseful and doesn’t think Sartori will commit a similar offense again. He added that the legal requirement that Sartori register as a sex offender is the most burdensome part of the sentence. Dixon convicted Sartori in September, after Sartori gave up his right to a jury trial and allowed a judge to decide the case. Dixon said he based his verdict on the testimony of Sue Batson, a sexual deviancy treatment provider who interviewed Sartori. Batson testified that it’s logical to conclude Sartori hid the camera to satisfy a sexual urge or desire. Sartori’s duties included keeping financial records, bookkeeping and playing the piano during performances. After his release, he must spend one year on community custody, which essentially is probationary supervision. Dixon declined to bar Sartori from having contact with children or accessing computers.