Restaurant workers secretly recorded by former boss outraged he's avoiding prison time

Restaurant workers secretly recorded by their former boss are outraged he will avoid prison time.  

In a plea agreement reached with the Will County State's Attorney, Michael Papandrea, 60, will serve two years' probation.

"We were all hoping for some sort of justice from what at happened, and we really didn't get that," said Megan Fiedler, a former manager at Parmesan's, who has been advocating on behalf of a group of female victims who were all underage when Papandrea secretly recorded them up their skirts and while using the restroom.

"He came to my house and played Santa for my kids. My kids sat on his lap," said Fiedler.  "That is nauseating. I think back to that day all the time. I can't believe I put my 5-year-old daughter on his lap."


Fiedler worked for Papandrea for eight years, describing the work environment at his restaurants, Parmesan's Wood Stone Pizza and Parmesan's Station, as enjoyable, with her and her coworkers oblivious to the fact they were being secretly recorded.

"Every hostess had to have a skirt or a dress on. Always," she said.  "There were a few things out of place, but I think we all just brushed it under the rug, saying, 'oh he's just friendly.'"

As part of a plea deal, Papandrea will avoid prison time, sentenced to two years' probation and a total of fourteen days in jail.

"His life goes on just like nothing ever happened," said Fiedler.  "People lost the ability to trust, lost the ability to walk into a public bathroom and wonder if someone's videotaping them. There are girls who won't wear skirts anymore. He took things from the victims that they're not going to be able to get back. Some of these girls were 15 and 16. It was their first job."

With no obvious legal recourse on the criminal side, Fiedler says she and the other victims now want to move this trauma behind them.  There is still an ongoing civil case against Papandrea.