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The small town of Benson, Minnesota is in shock this week after a well-respected elementary school teacher was charged with criminal sexual conduct after video footage allegedly shows him sexually abusing students in his classroom.
Roger Joseph Ebnet, a teacher for Benson Public Schools, was arrested Friday after Benson Police observed a video recorded on Dec 1 allegedly showing the Grade 2 teacher in his classroom with three different boys seated between his legs at various times throughout the day, according to KTSP. Each of the boys was 7 or 8 years old.
In a similar incident involving a different boy recorded in the complaint, Ebnet was allegedly caught on video placing “the boy’s hands behind the child’s bottom and in front of his groin area.” The accused then allegedly continued “to squeeze his thighs and make upward movements with his groin towards the child’s bottom.”
The criminal complaint further alleges that there was a similar incident with a third child which took place on Nov 30. On this occasion, the video allegedly shows a child sitting between Ebnet’s legs, and Ebnet again squeezing his thighs together while holding the child’s hands. He then appears to forcibly put the child’s hands behind his back before placing his arms around the child’s chest.
“I went to school with Roger Ebnet. So did my son,” an anonymous source told the Post Millennial. “We reside in the community. Mr. Ebnet is well known for being a lot of students’ favorite teacher, he was active in after-school programs including sports, and organized the yearly community celebration called ‘Kid Day.'”
“To most in the town with a population of around 3,500, the horrific news of the alleged crimes was shocking, but my gut instinct always felt something wasn’t right with him,” the local parent continued. “In my life of small-town living, I’ve found it’s usually the people who try the hardest to obtain outstanding reputations that have the most to hide.”
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