A former maintenance employee with the Nitro Swimming club in Austin, Texas has been arrested and accused of hiding a camera in a girls locker room at the swimming facility, according to the owners of the club.
Kenneth Lee Briggs, 42, was an employee with the club for just under a year, between July 2013 and March 2014. Nitro’s owners, Mike and Tracy Koleber, sent an email to club parents this week, reporting that the Department of Homeland Security had investigated Briggs and “uncovered evidence that he used a hidden camera to photograph people in the girl’s locker room and in the family restroom at Nitro’s Cedar Park facility at some point during his employment.”
According to club management, Briggs passed all standard background checks when he was hired, but was fired in March of 2014 when the club learned that he had misused company credit cards.
The team email says Homeland Security investigators approached the club this year as part of their investigation into Briggs, and that the club was asked to identify headshots taken from the camera allegedly hidden by Briggs. The email says the photos were “of such poor quality—extremely grainy and of very low resolution—that it has been impossible to identify anyone in any photo.”
The Kolebers wrote that Briggs is currently in jail and will be charged soon in federal court.
USA Swimming said that Briggs, as a club maintenance worker “is not and has never been a member of USA Swimming.” USA Swimming’s official banned list is only used for members of the swimming federation.
Last December, former Nitro coach Tim O’Brien was added to that banned list when he was charged with “indecency with a child.” O’Brien was accused of having a relationship with an underage swimmer from at least the time she was 15 until she was in her early-20s.
Nitro passed along this statement about Briggs, which echoed what was included in the email to the team:
“We take great pride in the trust that families place in us, and we work very hard to ensure that trust is earned each and every day. Unfortunately, it appears that a former employee—who passed all background checks upon hiring—breached that trust.
“U.S. Homeland Security is investigating this former maintenance employee—Kenneth Lee Briggs—who worked for our company from mid 2013 to early 2014. They uncovered evidence that he used a hidden camera to photograph people in a locker room at our Cedar Park facility at some point during his employment. To date, it has been impossible to identify anyone in any photo.
“We are working closely with Homeland Security to build a case against this individual. We will not rest until this person, if convicted, is brought to justice.
“The safety, security and privacy of our swimmers are always our top priorities. In more than 10 years of operation, this is the first such incident.
“We are deeply sorry this happened.”