A Westhampton Beach Middle School gym teacher was arrested for allegedly placing a video recorder in the girls locker room, New York State police said.

Thomas Sheppard, who has been employed with the Westhampton Beach School District for four years, was charged with unlawful surveillance and will be arraigned Wednesday at the Village of Westhampton Beach Justice Court. Police noted that the investigation is continuing and additional charges may be forthcoming.

New York State police were alerted to possible misconduct by the teacher after receiving a request from Village of Westhampton Beach police.

The investigation began Feb. 26 when school officials reported suspicious activity to authorities, police said.

“Evidence obtained reveals Sheppard apparently placed a video recording device in the female gym locker room,” police said in a news release.

Westhampton Beach school officials began their own investigation after learning of the allegations, the district said on its website.

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Sheppard was reassigned to administrative duties that prevent him from interacting with students, the district said.

Sheppard’s arrest comes the same day that Nassau County police announced charges against a Freeport principal for engaging in a “sexual act” with a male teenager, and one day after Suffolk County police charged a Wyandanch high school assistant principal for sending inappropriate text messages to students and faculty members.


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Rashed Mian has been covering local news for the Long Island Press since 2011. He graduated from Hofstra University in 2010 where he studied print journalism. Rashed, the staff's multimedia reporter, covers daily news for the web, shoots/edits feature videos and writes about civil liberties. He loves Afghan food and sports. Rashed is also a caffeine freak. Email: rmian@longislandpress.com. Twitter: rashedmian