OKLAHOMA CITY, OKLAHOMA: A judge told a man found guilty of secretly recording a "staggering" number of young girls their homes and in public places that she would castrate him if the law allowed for it before sentencing him to life in prison.
Ryan Aaron Alden, 39, was first arrested in 2018 when he was working for a company that installed security systems in people's homes and was found to have placed hidden cameras in the ceiling vents of two homes, according to The Oklahoman.
A Nicholls Hills resident had located one of the cameras and notified police on October 18.
When deputies searched the residence, they located three cameras, a power strip, and an extension cord plugged into an outlet in the attic.
After that discovery, his employer started searching the other houses where he worked and found two cameras hidden in an Oklahoma City home.
The cameras were pointing into the children's bedrooms and bathrooms and were hidden for months, with police stating in a court affidavit that he got the idea "from watching pornography."
Alden confessed to contacting the residents after installing the systems and making up excuses to return to their homes so he could install the cameras.
He said the cameras would connect to the WiFi and that he could remotely access them through an app on his phone.
"Alden advised that the residents would normally just tell him to come over and would provide him with the garage code," said the affidavit.
"He informed me that the residents were always very trusting and that is why he 'preyed' on them,"
The 39-year-old was also accused of taking clandestine photos and upskirt videos of women's skirts in numerous public places, including restaurants, gyms, schools, stores, mall changing rooms, a high school football game, and even churches.
"Alden advised that anytime he was out in public he was looking for opportunities to use his video for voyeurism," the affidavit stated.
"He described it as how he got his 'fix' in reference to his actions being an addiction."
Authorities seized multiple cell phones, hard disks, and laptops from his house and found more than 2,000 images of child pornography. They also found countless videos of victims -- reportedly enough to fill 12 spindles of compact discs -- many of whom are yet to be identified.
Alden was subsequently charged with 20 felonies, including aggravated possession of obscene material involving minors, manufacturing child pornography and using video equipment in a clandestine manner.
He pleaded guilty to the charges this past week, with several of his victims or their family reading out statements to Judge Amy Palumbo where they said pleasant memories had been tarnished because of his crimes.
Many said the trauma would mean years of therapy and that they always worried if their image was out there on the internet for the world to see.
The defense called upon Dr. Richard Kishur, a counselor who conducted a comprehensive psychosexual evaluation of Alden and said he believed the 39-year-old was treatable and asked Palumbo for a five to ten-year prison sentence followed by life probation.
The judge was not swayed and said that she felt if he were to be released, he would have nothing to lose and would commit the crimes again.
"If the law allowed me to have you castrated, I would," she said, before sentencing him to life in prison.
Alden, who had previously said he was glad he was caught because he did not know "where this would have taken him" said he probably deserved the life sentence for what he did.