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Prosecutors: Wristwatch Videos of Nude Boys at YMCA Also Show Defendant in Mirrors

Seven counts filed Tuesday against a Coon Rapids man do not include allegations at the Coon Rapids YMCA just north of Fridley that an earlier sheriff's statement mentioned. But further charges are possible, said an Anoka County Attorney spokesperso

 

A in Coon Rapids and Andover now faces seven counts relating to child pornography and stalking.

Anoka County prosecutors filed a criminal complaint against Robert Dennis Minor, 53, on Tuesday.

The complaint alleges that Minor's videos caught not only the images of nude and partially nude boys but also his own image, reflected in locker room mirrors.

Andover and Coon Rapids YMCAs?
The charges are based on activities they allege to have happened at the Andover YMCA and on child pornography that police say they found on computers at Minor's home in Coon Rapids.

The Emma B. Howe YMCA just north of Fridley at 8950 Springbrook Dr., Coon Rapids, isn't mentioned in the complaint filed Tuesday.

A statement from the Anoka County Sheriff's Office on Monday alleged Minor had photographed boys in various stages of undress at the Andover and Coon Rapids YMCAs "and at least one other as of yet unknown athletic facility."

The complaint does mention computer folders labeled "Y" and "New Y" but describes only the content of one video in the "New Y" folder.

Amanda Vickstrom, a spokesperson at the Anoka County Attorney's Office, said Wednesday she could not comment about allegations against Minor at the Coon Rapids YMCA. She said the case remains under investigation and prosecutors could decide to amend the charges filed Tuesday.

Prosecutors' Statement
Here is the text of the press release the Anoka County Attorney's Office issued on Tuesday:

Robert Dennis Minor, 53, Coon Rapids, was charged this morning in Anoka County District Court with one count of stalking a victim under 18 with sexual or aggressive intent, two counts of use of minors in a sexual performance, and four counts of possession of pornographic work involving minors.

According to the criminal complaint, Minor secretly videotaped young boys in various states of undress in the locker room at the YMCA in Andover. Search warrants at Minor’s home in Coon Rapids indicate multiple images and videos were on his computer which depict minor children in sexual acts. The investigation is continuing.

Anoka County District Court Judge Sharon Hall set bail for Minor at $500,000 without conditions, or $250,000 with conditions, including having no contact with children under the age of 18 and no contact with health club facilities. Minor’s next court appearance is scheduled for April 3.

“This case is very disturbing because the defendant allegedly preyed on young boys in such a secretive way,” stated Anoka County Attorney Tony Palumbo. “If these charges are proven, we will advocate for a severe sentence, as we believe this is outrageous conduct.”

“I’m thankful a child felt it was safe to talk to his parents about something he knew was not right, and that the YMCA had good policies in place. The result is that law enforcement was able to put a stop to what the defendant was doing,” said Palumbo.

Criminal Complaint Narrative
Here are excerpts from the criminal complaint against Minor:

Your complainant is Detective Justin Bloch of the Anoka County Sheriff's Office currently assigned to the Criminal Investigation Division. In that capacity, your complainant has reviewed written reports, conducted an investigation of his own, and learned the facts stated herein.

On February 26, 2013, the Anoka County Sheriff’s Office received a report regarding a juvenile male [who] reported to law enforcement that on February 24, 2013, he was [at] the YMCA located at 15200 Hanson Blvd NW in the City of Andover ...

[Juvenile] stated at approximately 2:00 pm, he entered the locker room and entered into a bathroom stall to change out of his swimming shorts. While in the stall, [he] observed a hand come over the top of the bathroom stall. The hand was coming from the stall next to [him]. The person was holding a silver wristwatch with the face of the watch facing [him]. The watch was not on the person’s wrist and according to [him] it appeared as if the person was intentionally pointing the watch face at [him] while [he] was changing. 

After exiting the stall, [the juvenile] was able to observe the person in the stall next to him. [The juvenile] described the male as an ... older white male, who was overweight, wearing a grey shirt, green shorts, and white socks pulled up high.

[The juvenile] later reported this incident to his father and the two of them looked on the internet and located a watch that [the juvenile] felt was the watch the male was holding. This particular watch has the capability to capture video through a camera mounted in the face of the watch.

With the assistance of YMCA staff, law enforcement reviewed video surveillance of the day in question and observed a male matching [the juvenile's] description [of the person with the watch]. The male was seen leaving the YMCA shortly after the incident occurred. YMCA staff identified the male as a member of the YMCA and further provided his identify as ROBERT DENNIS MINOR, DOB: 12/07/1959 (hereinafter defendant). In addition, law enforcement received information as to the defendant’s residence in Coon Rapids, Minnesota.

On March 2, 2013, a search warrant was executed at the defendant’s home in Coon Rapids. During the execution of the search warrant, a wristwatch similar to the one described by [the juvenile] was located in the home. The wristwatch has the capability to capture digital images from the camera mounted in the face of wristwatch. A computer was also located with a USB cable to connect to a home computer. A computer was also located in the same room where the wristwatch was found. A second search warrant was subsequently drafted to seize other items related to this investigation.

During the forensic examination of the hard drive from the Dell desktop computer and the external Seagate hard drive located in the defendant’s residence, Anoka County Sheriff’s Detective O’Hara located hundreds of photographs and videos were located. These photographs and videos depict prepubescent boys with their genitals as the focus of the photographs. In addition, several videos were captured in the men’s locker room and bathroom at the Andover YMCA. A number of those videos taken at the Andover YMCA clearly show the defendant’s face. Another video shows in the reflection of a locker room mirror, the defendant wearing the silver tone watch

Detective O’Hara also located two user created folders under the user name Robert. One folder was labeled Y and the other labeled New Y.  The New Y folder contained a solo video labeled REC_008.avi. That video is 10 minutes and 39 seconds in length and appears to have been produced at the Andover Y locker room. Contained on that video are several prepubescent male children observed in various stages of undress, including full nudity. At minute :51, the defendant is observed in a mirror in the locker room. He is also observed to be wearing the watch on his right wrist. The watch is recording while he is standing in the area of children in various stages of undress.  At minute 1:45, the defendant is observed on camera positioning the watch facing towards the shower area. The defendant then walks off camera and adults and children are observed in the camera view returning from the shower area. At minute 3:29, the [juvenile mentioned above] is observed on camera.  [The juvenile] is filmed near his locker drying off with a towel.  The defendant then follows [the juvenile] throughout the locker room area and ultimately into a bathroom stall. At minute 6:02, after B.A.A. enters the handicap stall, the defendant places the watch over the top of the stall and points the camera directly at [the juvenile]. [The juvenile] is observed removing his swim suit, however, he is wearing underwear underneath. [The juvenile] appears ready to remove his underwear but then gathers up his clothing and leaves the bathroom stall. The defendant is seen then leaving the adjacent stall and records [the juvenile] at the sink area of the locker room for a period of time. 

After minute 8:30, the defendant appears to take notice of another prepubescent boy and begins recording him. The defendant is clearly viewed in the mirror wearing a black jacket and the recordable wristwatch on his right wrist. The defendant points the wristwatch at the minor child who is undressing and records the minor child’s exposed genitals. 

In addition, during the forensic examination of the hard drive from the Dell desktop and the external Seagate hard drive, thousands of depictions of child pornography were located primarily in digital photograph form. Numerous video depictions of children engaged in sexual acts were located.  Nearly all videos and photographs were of prepubescent boys. In fact, the videos and photographs were actually categorized in user created folders. ...

In the user created folder called Sets, 106 additional folders categorized by names such as [list of boys' first names] and so on were located. Upon review of the contents of each folder, each folder appears to contain a set of photographs of only one child.

Of particular concern are the user folders located depicting children’s names. The name [boy's name] was located on the external hard drive. The child is a prepubescent child wearing glasses.  He is observed in a locker room, presumably a YMCA locker room.  The child is fully nude, getting dressed. The focal point of the video is the child’s genitals. The defendant is also clearly visible in camera view.  (Video 1). 

Another user created folder called [boy's name] was located, which appears to have been recorded using an I-phone, according to a forensic analysis. This video depicts two prepubescent children changing in the locker room with their genitalia clearly visible in the camera frame. In that same folder labeled Hunter are 22 digital photographs that appear to have been extracted from the video of the two boys. The video has been cropped and saved as multiple still images. The images depict both children centered in the video frame with their penises exposed to the camera.  (Image 1). 

Another user created folder labeled “You Know What” depicts prepubescent children in various stages of undress in a locker room.  There are two actual videos and 89 individual digital photographs that appear to have been extracted from the video.  The extracted images appear to have been cropped and center the child in the frame and concentrate the camera frame on the boy’s genitals.  (Image 2).

In addition, located on the computer was evidence to suggest that the user was using the file program called Gigatribe.  Gigatribe is used by child pornographers to share their child pornography collections. According to the Gigatribe website, “once you have connected to Gigatribe, you invite your friends and or accept invitations. All of the users you select will be part of your private network. You then choose which folders on your hard drive you wish to share with the members of your network.  They will then be able to see the contents of these shared folders and download what they want. You will also be able to do the same when browsing through the folders they share with you.”  

On March 4, 2013, Detective O’Hara documented the following three videos located on the Seagate hard drive:  [description of videos of children engaged in sex acts with other children and an adult male].

Charges
Here are the seven counts included in the criminal complaint against Robert Dennis Minor:

COUNT 1: STALKING - FOLLOW, MONITOR, PURSUE ANOTHER - AGGRAVATED VIOLATIONS - VICTIM UNDER 18, SEXUAL OR AGGRESSIVE INTENT
Minnesota Statutes §609.749, Subd. 2(2); 609.749, Subd. 3(b); 609.101
PENALTY: 0-10 Years and/or $6,000.00 - $20,000.00
On or about February 24, 2013, in the County of Anoka, Minnesota, ROBERT DENNIS MINOR, did stalk another by following, monitoring, or pursuing another, whether in person or through any available technological or other means, against a victim under the age of 18, if the actor is more than 36 months older than the victim, and the act is committed with sexual or aggressive intent.

COUNT 2: USE MINORS IN SEXUAL PERFORMANCE/PORNOGRAPHIC WORK
Minnesota Statutes §617.246, Subd. 2; 609.101
PENALTY: 0-10 Years and/or $6,000.00 - $20,000.00
On or about February 24, 2013, in the County of Anoka, Minnesota, ROBERT DENNIS MINOR, did promote, employ, use or permit a minor to engage in or assist others to engage minors in posing or modeling alone or with others in any sexual performance or pornographic work knowing or having reason to know that the conduct intended is a sexual performance or a pornographic work. (Image 1).

COUNT 3: USE MINORS IN SEXUAL PERFORMANCE/PORNOGRAPHIC WORK
Minnesota Statutes §617.246, Subd. 2; 609.101
PENALTY: 0-10 Years and/or $6,000.00 - $20,000.00
On or about February 24, 2013, in the County of Anoka, Minnesota, ROBERT DENNIS MINOR, did promote, employ, use or permit a minor to engage in or assist others to engage minors in posing or modeling alone or with others in any sexual performance or pornographic work knowing or having reason to know that the conduct intended is a sexual performance or a pornographic work. (Image 2).

COUNT 4: POSSESSION OF PORNOGRAPHIC WORK INVOLVING MINORS
Minnesota Statutes §617.247, Subd. 4(a); 609.101
PENALTY: 0-5 Years and/or $1,500.00 - $5,000.00
On or about February 24, 2013, in the County of Anoka, Minnesota, ROBERT DENNIS MINOR, did possess pornographic work or a computer disk or computer or other electronic, magnetic, or optical storage system or a storage system of any other type, containing a pornographic work, knowing or with reason to know its content and character. (Video 1).

COUNT 5:   POSSESSION OF PORNOGRAPHIC WORK INVOLVING MINORS
Minnesota Statutes §617.247, Subd. 4(a); 609.101
PENALTY: 0-5 Years and/or $1,500.00 - $5,000.00
On or about February 24, 2013, in the County of Anoka, Minnesota, ROBERT DENNIS MINOR, did possess pornographic work or a computer disk or computer or other electronic, magnetic, or optical storage system or a storage system of any other type, containing a pornographic work, knowing or with reason to know its content and character. (Video A).

COUNT 6:   POSSESSION OF PORNOGRAPHIC WORK INVOLVING MINORS
Minnesota Statutes §617.247, Subd. 4(a); 609.101
PENALTY: 0-5 Years and/or $1,500.00 - $5,000.00
On or about February 24, 2013, in the County of Anoka, Minnesota, ROBERT DENNIS MINOR, did possess pornographic work or a computer disk or computer or other electronic, magnetic, or optical storage system or a storage system of any other type, containing a pornographic work, knowing or with reason to know its content and character. (Video B).

COUNT 7:   POSSESSION OF PORNOGRAPHIC WORK INVOLVING MINORS
Minnesota Statutes §617.247, Subd. 4(a); 609.101
PENALTY: 0-5 Years and/or $1,500.00 - $5,000.00
On or about February 24, 2013, in the County of Anoka, Minnesota, ROBERT DENNIS MINOR, did possess pornographic work or a computer disk or computer or other electronic, magnetic, or optical storage system or a storage system of any other type, containing a pornographic work, knowing or with reason to know its content and character. (Video C).

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