Todd Hoffner child porn scandal: Videos of his children aren't pornographic, expert says

Categories: Crime, Sex, Sports
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Two experts say they don't think Hoffner is guilty.
More than two months after Mankato State head football coach Todd Hoffner was arrested for allegedly shooting pornographic videos of his own children, a sex offender expert has gone on the record to say he thinks Hoffner is innocent.

-- Todd Hoffner's wife says her husband is innocent of child porn charges
-- Todd Hoffner, MSU-Mankato football coach, allegedly shot sex videos of his own young kids

William Seabloom, a sex therapist known for the sex offender treatment methods he's developed, watched the films along with Hoffner's attorney earlier this month. He concluded: "The children in the videos I observed are engaged in normal play where they are singing and laughing. Nothing can be interpreted that I can see or hear from the children's point of view that they are intending to elicit a sexual response in any way."

After Hoffner was arrested in August, here's how police characterized footage found by an MSU-Mankato IT worker when the coach brought his phone in for repairs (from the Mankato Free Press):
A one-minute video created on June 26 showed the three children, one boy and two girls, with their backs to the camera and covered by towels, the complaint said. They drop the towels and turn toward the camera, exposing themselves. The boy allegedly fondles himself and the girls allegedly bend over and expose their anuses to the camera.

A much shorter video showed the girls dancing naked before the boy enters wearing only a football helmet, according to the complaint. The third video, about two minutes long, allegedly shows one of girls being woken at night by a male and told to go to the bathroom. After the girl gets up, the camera focuses in on the back side of her underwear, the complaint said.
But while Seabloom doesn't dispute that characterization of the footage's substance, he disagreed with the allegation Hoffner had a sexual motive while filming. From a new Free Press report:
Seabloom said he didn't see any evidence that the children were doing anything sexually stimulating.

[Jim Fleming, Hoffner's attorney] also filed an affidavit Monday from Dr. Lon Knudson, a Mankato Clinic pediatrician who has been providing care for the Hoffner children since 2008. His affidavit said he hasn't had any concerns about the physical and emotional health of the children. Knudson also said he was made aware of one daughter's bedwetting problem three years ago. The problem was cited by Hoffner's wife, Melodee, as a reason for having the bathroom video.

"I have not found or suspected physical or psychological damage to these children in any respect," Knudson's affidavit said.
Hoffner's two child porn charges could be dropped as soon as tomorrow during a hearing before District Court Judge Krista Jass. In the meantime, the 2009 Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference Coach of the Year remains on paid leave from MSU-Mankato.

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