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Former gym coach indicted after recording device found in bathroom

Smith County Jail via WSMV

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    CARTHAGE, Tennessee (WSMV) — A Smith County cheerleading coach was indicted on 12 counts surrounding his arrest for allegedly putting a recording device in a bathroom at a gym in Smith County.

Andrew Halford, 33, was indicted earlier this week by the Smith County Grand Jury.

The Smith County Sheriff’s Department said Halford, an instructor at Smith County Elite Cheerleading and Gymnastics, confessed to putting a backpack with a GoPro camera in the bathroom on Jan. 14. He told business owners that he captured a video of the victims changing clothes.

The sheriff’s department confirmed a man was arrested for putting a recording device in a bathroom at a cheerleading gym in Smith County and could be connected to a similar incident.

Halford also worked as a coach at Premier Athletics in Franklin. A camera was found inside a girls’ changing and restroom at Premier. It contained videos of 60 females, mostly minors. Franklin Police detectives believe the suspect had been intermittently staging the camera to capture video in the restroom since September 2020.

The grand jury indicted Halford on three counts of attempted especially aggravated sexual exploitation of a minor, three counts of attempted aggravated unlawful photographing of a minor, three counts of unlawful photography in violation of privacy and three counts of attempt to commit especially aggravated sexual exploitation of a minor.

Franklin Police have identified the 55 victims who were videotaped inside a changing and restroom inside a Franklin gym, according to a news release.

Franklin Police said Thursday its investigation has been forwarded to the district attorney’s office for review.

Halford is being held at the Smith County Jail.

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