By Richard Meryhew
The attorney for a Mankato football coach facing two felony counts of child pornography has asked the judge overseeing the case to dismiss the charges.
Jim Fleming, who represents Minnesota State University, Mankato football coach Todd Hoffner, filed a motion for dismissal in Blue Earth County District Court in advance of a hearing Wednesday before Judge Krista Jass.
Fleming asked that the charges against Hoffner be dismissed because the videos offered as evidence by prosecutors are “not child pornography,” he wrote.
He also wrote that “there is absolutely no evidence Todd Hoffner intended the videos to be or knew or had reason to know the videos would be alleged a sexual performance or pornographic work.”
Hoffner, 46, was charged in late August after three relatively brief videos of his three children dancing naked and touching themselves were found on a campus-issued cell phone.
According to court records, the coach brought the phone to the university’s IT department Aug. 10 after it had malfunctioned. He has been on paid administrative leave from the school pending the outcome of a school investigation.
Fleming declined to elaborate Friday on his motion.
Blue Earth County prosecutor Michael Hanson, who has repeatedly declined to discuss the case publicly, was out of the office Friday could not be reached for comment.
County Attorney Ross Arneson also has consistently declined to discuss it. “I will not comment about this specific case, as any comments from me could increase pretrial publicity,” he said in an email.