Walter Rivas, who is charged with unlawful surveillance, leaves Nassau police...

Walter Rivas, who is charged with unlawful surveillance, leaves Nassau police headquarters in Mineola for arraignment on Friday. Credit: Howard Schnapp

An exterminator was arrested on Thursday after he allegedly recorded a 19-year-old client while she changed clothes in her Mineola apartment, Nassau County Police said.

Walter Rivas, 45, formerly of Joroba Pest Control in Hempstead, arrived at 2:50 p.m., to exterminate the woman’s apartment. While Rivas was spraying, some of the chemicals got on the victim and he advised her to change clothes, police said.

While changing clothes in her bedroom, the woman noticed a cellphone actively recording in a bucket with a hole on her bed, police said. She immediately called 911.

After an investigation, Rivas, of West Hempstead, was charged with second-degree unlawful surveillance. On Friday, Rivas pleaded not guilty and was released on his own recognizance. Judge Madeleine Petrara-Perrin issued a temporary order of protection. An attorney for Rivas could not be reached for comment.

Jose Barrios, owner of Joroba Pest Control, said the company fired Rivas after his arrest, describing the charges as “unacceptable.”

The small business had worked with the 19-year-old and her family for over a year, he said.

“We never had that kind of problem before,” said Barrios.

Latest videos

Newsday LogoSUBSCRIBEUnlimited Digital AccessOnly 25¢for 5 months