Judge tosses child porn case against MSU-Mankato football coach - New York News

Judge tosses child porn case against MSU-Mankato football coach

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Todd Hoffner Todd Hoffner
MANKATO, Minn. (AP) -

A Minnesota judge has dismissed child pornography charges against a college football head coach accused of making pornographic videos of his children.

Blue Earth County District Court Judge Krista Jass ruled Friday that the case against Todd Hoffner is dismissed for lack of probable cause.

Hoffner is the football head coach at Minnesota State University, Mankato. He was charged in August with two felonies. Prosecutors said he made videos of his children performing suggestive acts while naked.

Hoffner and his wife insisted all along that the videos were not inappropriate, and were merely images of children acting silly and dancing after taking a bath.

A search of Hoffner's home found no evidence of child porn, and social workers found no evidence of abuse.

"I'm so thankful to live in a country where the presumption of innocence still means something," he said. "It has finally taken a person with great courage, authority and common sense to see what these videos really are -- innocent and harmless family moments captured on a smartphone."

After the case was dismissed, Hoffner characterized the experience as a nightmare that lasted 102 days over 102 seconds.

After the case was dismissed, the Assistant Blue Earth County Attorney Mike Hanson released the following statement:

"Our office was trying to enforce a statute enacted to protect children. No matter what the prosecutor does in a controversial case with a high-profile suspect, they will be criticized. We do not go looking for cases like this, they are brought to us.

While we do not agree with the Court's decision to dismiss the case, we accept it. Enough media attention has been devoted to this case and we do not plan to make further comment."

Despite the ruling, Hoffner remains on leave due to a pending university investigation. No additional details were disclosed.


The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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