NewsCrime and Courts


Frenchtown man pleads not guilty to secretly recording teens in his home

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Steven Jeffrey Martin has been charged with felony sexual abuse of children
Posted at 11:14 AM, Feb 28, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-28 13:19:36-05

MISSOULA — Steven Jeffrey Martin, a Frenchtown schools paraprofessional charged with felony sexual abuse of children, pleaded not guilty on Monday, February 28, 2022.

Martin, 60 years old, is accused of having cameras in his home that recorded videos of two teenage boys that were living with him without their knowledge.

Court documents say that on Monday, February 14, 2022, Missoula County Sheriff's deputies responded to a home on Jenny Ann Court for a welfare check and a report of possible sexual assault.

When deputies arrived, they learned two teenagers, ages 16 and 18, who were temporarily living with Martin confronted him about a camera in their bathroom.

During the course of the investigation, Martin told the deputies he had cameras in the kitchen, upstairs bathroom, and each of the boy's bedrooms.

Martin admitted to deputies he watched the videos "for entertainment" and "dancing naked in the bathroom singing."

A deputy asked Martin what he does when watching the videos, and Martin replied "sometimes masturbating."

Martin told deputies he thought his actions were a "victimless crime, no one else would find out."

Steven Jeffrey Martin

Several people have told MTN that the teens are foreign exchange students who were living with Martin; we have not yet been able to confirm if that is accurate.

Martin is a paraprofessional who works for the Frenchtown School District. In a statement to MTN News, Frenchtown Schools superintendent Les Meyer said the allegations do not relate to Martin's employment with the district.

Meyer said Martin is on leave without pay pending a school board hearing to terminate his employment. He added the school is cooperating with law enforcement and will share any relevant information with families and students as it becomes available.

During Monday's arraignment before Judge Jason Marks, Martin's attorney requested a bail reduction and asked that Martin be released from jail with an ankle monitoring system.

Prosecutors opposed the bond reduction and Judge Marks denied the request.

Martin's bail remains at $200,000.