Judge to rule on bail in taping of ESPN's Andrews - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Judge to rule on bail in taping of ESPN's Andrews

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FILE- In this Thursday, Aug. 27, 2009 file photo, photo provided by Harpo Productions, ESPN college football sideline reporter Erin Andrews, left, talks with television talk-show host Oprah Winfrey during a taping for an upcoming showin Chicago. In the in FILE- In this Thursday, Aug. 27, 2009 file photo, photo provided by Harpo Productions, ESPN college football sideline reporter Erin Andrews, left, talks with television talk-show host Oprah Winfrey during a taping for an upcoming showin Chicago. In the in
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CHICAGO (AP) - A judge was expected to decide Monday whether a man accused of stalking ESPN reporter Erin Andrews and secretly video taping her nude should be returned to Los Angeles as a federal prisoner or free on bail to face charges.

Michael David Barrett, 47, of Westmont, Ill., was being held in jail over the weekend after his arrest Friday at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago. Investigators believe he recorded Andrews by aiming a cell phone camera through an altered peephole in the door of her hotel room.

An FBI affidavit said Barrett requested and stayed in a room near Andrews at a Tennessee hotel where seven videos were likely taken. An eighth video may have been shot at a Milwaukee hotel. Barrett is accused of posting the videos online and trying to sell them to celebrity Web site TMZ.com.

Barrett, clad in the bright orange jumpsuit of a federal prisoner, made a brief initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge Arlander Keys on Saturday in Chicago. He faces charges in Los Angeles, where TMZ is based, of interstate stalking and could face up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine if convicted.

"I don't think he's evenhad a traffic ticket," said his lawyer, Rick Beuke, who said he has known Barrett for a decade.

"He's as regular a guy as you'll ever meet - a great friend," Beuke added. "I must have calls from 30 people wanting to know what they could do to help." Beuke said Barrett has been divorced for some time and has children.

A spokeswoman for the Combined Insurance Company of America confirmed that Barrett was an employee who worked in sales management. Amy Burrell-Tichy said the company was cooperating with the FBI.

Beuke said he did not discuss the particulars of the charges when he met briefly with Barrett, surrounded by FBI agents, in court. He said he would study the FBI affidavit and try to meet with Barrett on Sunday to learn more.

Several TV networks and newspapers aired clips or printed screen grabs from the videos of Andrews in July. The 31-year-old has covered hockey, college football, college basketball and Major League Baseball for ESPN since 2004 and was named "sexiest sportscaster" by Playboy magazine in 2008 and 2009.

Asked how Barrett became interested in Andrews, if the allegations were true or how he managed to get the adjacent hotel rooms, Beuke said he assumed it was not true. Chicago FBI spokesman Ross Rice said he did not know how Barrett allegedly became interested in Andrews.

An FBI affidavit said agents reviewed eight videos and all but one appeared to be taken in a single hotel. It said Andrews reviewed several and said they appeared to be of her in a room at the Marriott Nashville at Vanderbilt University.

Authorities said Barrett occupied an adjacent room, and that the peephole in the door of Andrews' room appeared to have been modified with a hacksaw to permit videos to be made with a cell phone camera.

Bethesda, Md.-based Marriott International Inc. said in a statement that the company takes its guests' security and privacy seriously and has been cooperating with investigators.

FBI agents also went to the Ramada Conference Center in Milwaukee, formerly the Radisson Airport. The affidavit said Barrett made a reservation in the hotel for a night when Andrews was staying there and that the peephole in the room that she occupied had been similarly modified.

But they said Barrett never checked in to that hotel, and the interior of the room did not fully match what was seen on the eighth video.

Wyndam Worldwide Corp., which owns Ramada, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The affidavit said that in making his reservation in Nashville, Barrett specifically requested a room next to Andrews, who was referred to in the FBI document as "individual A."

Reservation records in the hotel's computer showed the notation: "INFO-GST RQST TO RM NXT TO (individual A)," the affidavit said.

Andrews thanked FBI agents and federal prosecutors for their work and said she hoped the case will eventually help others.

"For my part, I will make every effort to strengthen the laws on a state and federal level to better protect victims of criminal stalking," she said in a statement.

Messages left at a phone listing for a Michael D. Barrett in Westmont weren't immediately returned. Barrett's father, Frank Barrett, 78, of Milwaukie, Ore., a suburb of Portland, said the arrest came as a shock and the situation "does not match the Mike I know."

"He's always been an upstanding, hardworking guy," Frank Barrett said.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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