Field released on promise to appear

Published 12:38 pm Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Man in alleged peeping in court today

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The Home Solutions Midwest owner who is charged with allegedly peeping into a restroom with a remote camera was released from Freeborn County District Court on Wednesday on his promise to reappear for his next hearing.

In what was the first appearance on the charges, Freeborn County District Court Judge John A. Chesterman told Paul Duane Field, 62, he was to have no contact with his alleged victim and that he needed to be photographed and fingerprinted because he was being charged with a felony.

If he violated any of these conditions, he would be required to pay an unconditional bail of $5,000.

Field, who faces a felony charge for harassment, a gross misdemeanor charge for harassment and a gross misdemeanor charge for invasion of privacy, is accused of placing a camera in a vent in the women’s restroom at Home Solutions that transmitted to a television in his office, according to court documents.

During a search warrant March 12, Field reportedly told an Albert Lea police detective he knew about the camera and placed it in the restroom a month earlier; however, he said he had not recorded anything with it, records state.

During the Wednesday hearing, Field’s lawyer, Dan Donnelly, requested a default omnibus hearing for his client, noting that he had not yet received all of the evidence and discovery in the case. Once he reviews these findings, he could later decide to contest parts of it.

Donnelly could not immediately be reached for comment.

Eric Herendeen of the Mower County’s Attorney’s Office was representing the prosecution at the hearing, because of a conflict between Field and an employee of the Freeborn County Attorney’s Office. The Mower County Attorney’s Office also filed the charges.

Herendeen said he or someone from his office would be in attendance at each hearing.

Field’s felony charge carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

The gross misdemeanors carry a maximum penalty of one year in prison and a $3,000 fine.

His next hearing is tentatively scheduled for June 28.