On Tuesday, November 14, an ex-teacher and administrator at South Seattle College was arrested on charges of voyeurism. Gene Baker, the now ex-director of international marketing and outreach at South, rented out several rooms in his house to exchange students, all of whom were Asian women. According to one of these students, Baker had security cameras installed around the house and keys to every girl’s room. He would call her into his office at school for personal issues she says could have easily been discussed via email or text, or simply outside of office hours. In a word, according to her, he was “infatuated” with her.
This is not the first such incident to occur at Seattle Colleges.
On Sunday, November 11, she called the police, having found a camera and SD card with images of her in various states of undress inside an alarm clock Baker had given her and encouraged her to use. Officials arriving at Baker’s home found him packing his belongings into his car with plane tickets to South Korea in his possession.
Baker was held on $500,000 bail Tuesday through Wednesday. He posted bail on Thursday, but on Friday was charged with voyeurism and perjury for lying about his possession of weapons — he allegedly told police he never owned one, when in fact he did have at least one gun.
An email sent to all students and staff of Seattle Colleges from Chancellor Shouan Pan says that these “allegations are troubling” and that the “leadership at South is providing SPD their full support.” Furthermore, the email states that South “has launched a Title IX investigation and is coordinating support and assistance to all those impacted.”
This is not the first instance of such incidents at Seattle Colleges. In 2015, one of three exchange students living in a homestay to attend North Seattle College found a hidden camera in her bathroom and reported it to the police. Her host, Anthony Yu, was charged with two counts of voyeurism and one of attempted voyeurism.
If you or someone you know find something concerning about your or their living situation — from hidden cameras to controlling behavior — there are many resources available to you; the Seattle Police Department can, as in this case, investigate, but if you’re not comfortable with the police then there is also the counseling office at Central or even a trusted teacher.