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Saturday, November 28, 2015
My pal's fiance was peeping Tom who secretly filmed me naked and left me feeling violated
Sickened: Victim Rachel, right, with mate Steph
Disgusted Steph Pearce has spoken of her horror after discovering her fiance was a peeping Tom who secretly made hundreds of indecent videos.
Police told wedding planner Steph, 32, that Daniel Helps had been using his mobile phone to film women and girls aged as young as 13 in leisure centre changing rooms.
She was heartbroken – especially when she also found the pervert had recorded naked clips of her best friend Rachel Thornbury, who was a lodger at their two-bed home.
Helps, 36, a high-flying design engineer with vacuum cleaner firm Dyson,
was jailed for 15 months
High-flyer: Pervert Helps
admitted six counts of voyeurism
and two of making indecent images of children.
It emerged that he recorded 298 obscene films on 118 different occasions between 2011 and 2014.
He also regularly filmed unsuspecting Rachel with a camcorder between October 2004 and October 2007 – capturing her in her bedroom and while taking a shower.
Helps recorded her most intimate moments, even filming her while asleep. In all of the photos and videos recovered by police, Rachel was completely naked.
She said: “I feel violated. It makes me feel sick. I never noticed that he was looking at me or fancied me.
“Steph was my best friend. When I moved in with them, we all started spending quite a lot of time together.
“Daniel and Steph were the perfect couple. They absolutely adored each other. They never argued, ever.
"We would eat dinner together and all sit on the sofa watching TV. I felt at home.”
Betrayed: Poor Steph had no idea of his double life
Rachel, now 30, was just 22 when she started lodging with Helps and Steph in Chippenham, Wilts.
She went on: “I completely trusted him. I was so young and self-conscious at the time. I felt safe in that house. It was my home. There wasn’t even a lock on my door.”
Steph, who was expecting a baby by Helps before
suffering a miscarriage
, had no idea about the secret life he was living during their six-year relationship.
She had regarded him as a “perfect man”, a romantic with a six-figure salary who lavished gifts on her and proposed in Venice.
Widow wins fight to stop husband’s lover being buried with him
But after his arrest in July 2014, she found he had filmed another of her close friends with her boyfriend when they stayed at the house.
Steph said: “Weirdly, he never once asked if he could record us having sex. We had an active sex life but he didn’t have any strange fetishes. There was nothing weird at all.
“I couldn’t believe it was him when I found out. It makes me sick to think that we almost had a child together.
“Rachel and I both feel completely betrayed. I don’t know how he could do what he did and then sit at the table a couple of minutes later. I thought I knew Daniel inside out. Obviously I didn’t.”
Comfortable: Rachel felt safe in their home
Helps, who is now married to another woman, was finally caught while trying to take pictures of a 13-year-old girl.
She spotted his hand as he pointed a
under a cubicle door while she and two friends got changed at
the Olympiad leisure centre in Chippenham, Wiltshire.
The youngster ran out of the cubicle and saw a man running away.
CCTV images were published in a local newspaper and Helps was identified and arrested at his home in the town.
He initially claimed he had seen someone stealing the girls’ bags and was trying to catch them in the act.
But he later changed his story and said he took the photos out of curiosity.
Helps claimed he did not want the images for sexual gratification.
Rachel added: “I’m just so relieved he has been sent down. It’s at least given me some closure.”
November 28, 2015
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