Michael David Barrett spent over two years in prison for filming sportscaster Erin Andrews through peepholes in 2008. Although it’s been nearly a decade since one of the videos went public in 2009 and became an early viral video, the incident continues to haunt Andrews to this day. She spoke about the ongoing effects of the situation in a June 11 episode of NBC’s Sunday Night With Megyn Kelly.
Although he is out of prison today, Barrett is not completely free. After a 2016 civil trial, the 55-year-old Barrett will have to pay Andrews millions of dollars for the emotional damage he caused.
Here’s a look back at the case and where Barrett is today.
1. Barrett Filmed Andrews Nude Through Peepholes in Two Hotels in 2008
In 2008, Barrett followed Andrews to the Nashville Marriott and the Radisson Airport Hotel in Milwaukee. He filmed her through peepholes while she was nude. The video from Nashville made it online a year later and became an early viral video. The video from Milwaukee was never posted online.
In October 2009, The Associated Press reported that Barrett was arrested by the FBI. At the time of his arrest, the Westmont, Illinois resident was working for Combined Insurance Company of America. He was recently divorced and had children with his ex-wife.
The FBI accused Barrett of requesting a room at the Nashville hotel near Andrews’ and they believed he filmed seven videos there. They believed an eighth video was made at the Milwaukee hotel. The FBI filed federal charges of interstake stalking in Los Angeles, since Barrett tried to sell the videos to TMZ.
Two months after his arrest, a court filing showed that Barrett agreed to plead guilty, CNN reported. He was finally sentenced in March 2010, to 2 years and six months in prison. He also had to pay $5,000 in fines and $7,366 in restitution. He was also put on three years probation.
According to the Associated Press, prosecutors said Barrett also victimized 16 other women, uploading 32 videos to DailyMotion.com. The names of the other victims were not revealed.
2. Barrett Admitted That it ‘Was a Pretty Ill-Conceived Plan’ in a 2016 Deposition
In October 2015, Andrews sued Barrett and the Nashville Marriott for $75 million. The case went to trial in February 2016 and lasted two weeks. According to the New York Post, Barrett sat for a two and a half-hour deposition that was played to the jurors in court.
Since he’d already been convicted and released from prison at that point, Barrett gave more details about his scheme. He admitted that his plan to film Andrews and make money off the video was “a pretty ill-conceived plan.” He wanted to capitalize on Andrews’ growing popularity online.
Barrett said he was in Nashville for a business trip anyway and learned that Andrews was staying at the same hotel. He claimed that the hotel desk clerk just gave him Andrews’ room number without asking any further questions. After learning that the room next to hers was free, he requested it. While Andrews was out, he took the peephole out of Andrews’ door and altered it.
“I used a hacksaw to cut off the threads, so it was basically a plug, and put it back in,” Barrett explained. “I went back to the room, and, unfortunately for both of us, I could hear that the shower was on in her room when I walked by. I waited until the shower went off. Then I pulled out the plug [on her door] and waited for the opportunity. I waited for a matter of 10 seconds. I waited for her to be visible.”
Barrett filmed Andrews for four and a half minutes. He also admitted to filming other women and had only stopped a few months before he was arrested.
“It was totally uncharacteristic of me. I thought to myself about a lot of things, and about how stupid I am. It just came to my head,” Barrett said in the deposition. “There was stress at work, money problems. Things weren’t going well. The future was uncertain. There were a lot of changes happening. Not sure where I was going to fit in the future. There was restructuring. I was running out of money. I made some bad investments. I bought at house at the wrong time. I bought high and it crashed.”
3. Barrett Owed Andrews $28 Million of the $55 Million Lawsuit Judgement
The civil lawsuit trial ended with Andrews winning a $55 million judgement. However, it’s estimated that she’ll only see a fraction of that since Barrett owes $28 million of that. The Nashville hotel owed around $27 million in the judgement.
“They can garnish his wages, but there’s essentially nothing to collect,” Rick Sanders, a Nashville litigator and partner at Aaron & Sanders, told The Hollywood Reporter. “He’s a perfect example of a judgment-proof defendant.”
THR noted that Andrews was more likely to see money from the hotel, but even then she would have to settle for less. If she reached a $20 million settlement, she might have owed her legal team around $1 million. Of what is left, she’d still have to pay the IRS.
In April 2016, Andrews, Barrett and the Hotel reached a confidential settlement, The Tennessean reported at the time.
4. Barrett’s Father Said in March 2016 That His Son Was Living in His Basement & Couldn’t Afford $100
In March 2016, The New York Post spoke with Francis Barrett, Barrett’s father. He said his son was living in the basement of his Portland, Oregon home.
“He can’t afford $100, let alone $28 million. If he could, he wouldn’t be living in my basement,” Francis Barrett told the Post.
His father said Barrett knows he “screwed up his life,” adding, “It’s an awful thing, and he knows it.”
The Post reports that Barrett filed for bankruptcy after he was released from prison. Records show that he was nearly $160,000 in debt at the time. He was working as a truck driver for a meat-packing plant at the time of the lawsuit judgement.
5. Andrews Will Never Forgive Barrett for What He Did
In her interview with Megyn Kelly, Andrews said she will never forgive Barrett.
“I have to relive it all the time. It’s shaped who I am as a person,” she said in a clip released before the interview aired. “It messed with my family. It hurt my mom and dad so bad and it still does. And you don’t get any sort of pass for doing that.”
Elsewhere in the interview, Andrews said she finds the breathing in the video to be the most disgusting part of it.
“One of the videos we had to watch you can hear him breathing in it. You can also hear people behind him walking, which is also disgusting,” Andrews told Kelly. “But I think the breathing is the hardest part. You can just hear him breathing.”