High profile gymnastics coach charged with child pornography, vo - FOX 8, WVUE, fox8live.com, weather, app, news, saints

breaking

High profile gymnastics coach charged with child pornography, voyeurism

Brian Townsend, 43 (Source: Kenner Police Department) Brian Townsend, 43 (Source: Kenner Police Department)
KENNER, LA (WVUE) -

A gymnastics coach, with access to some of the biggest dance studios in Jefferson Parish, has been arrested on suspicion of distributing child pornography on the internet and recording a nude 9-year-old girl on video.

Brian Townsend, 43, 4000 block of California Avenue in Kenner, was taken into custody Thursday by Kenner police and the FBI.

Townsend’s employers have been notified of his arrest. 

He was charged with six counts of pornography involving juveniles, production of pornography involving juveniles, and 13 counts of video voyeurism.

“What he does, he secretly records a child undressing and changing clothes, you can see that child, who we were able to locate, that child is nine-years-old, completely nude on this video, there's 13 videos of this girl,” Lt. Brian McGregor, with Kenner Police Department, said.

Friday, FOX 8 spoke with a woman who is a family friend of that little girl, but won’t be identified to protect the 9-year old.

“What they said, he only did it here once, which greatly disturbs me,” the woman said.

She said Townsend lives nearby her home, where the little girl would visit often, spending time with Townsend regularly.

“He didn't really treat her different, when she was outside doing her little gymnastics things like that he was hard on her, ‘Come on do it again, you can do this, don't say can't, there's no such thing as can't,’ She called him coach,” the woman said, as she mimicked how Townsend would treat the girl.

Townsend told police he is employed by:

Debby Dillehay Dance Studio, 3745 Florida Avenue, Kenner.

Fusion Performing Arts Center, 8814 Veterans Boulevard, Metairie.

Rhonda Edmunson School of Dance, 5050 W. Esplanade Avenue, Metairie.

Helena Hosch School of Dance, 4631 W. Napoleon Avenue, Suite 1A, Metairie.  

Kenner police said they received a tip from Louisiana State Police based in Shreveport that Townsend was committing the alleged crimes.

Officers performed an on-scene investigation of one laptop, three compact discs, a cell phone, two external storage devices. They found video of girls performing sex acts. Two thumb drives revealed 13 videos Townsend secretly recorded of the 9-year-old girl, according to police.

Investigators said Townsend activated the video camera on his phone and hid the camera in a changing room. The video showed the girl changing clothes and completely nude, officers said. After the girl left the room, Townsend retrieved the camera.

“I would have never thought he would do that, obviously, evidence proves different but if you met the man you never would've thought. Children were his life,” the woman said.

Detectives interviewed Townsend and they said he admitted to downloading child pornography several times. He also said he is not sexually attracted to kids, but could not say why he allegedly downloaded the illegal images.

Townsend has been a children's coach for 30 years. He said he never inappropriately touched a child during that time.

Townsend remains in custody, no bond has been set and more charges could be filed.

Kenner police Chief Michael Glaser urges anyone who believes their child may have been improperly photographed, videoed, or has information concerning Townsend to call Detective Jessica Zuppardo at (504) 712-2410.  

 

Copyright 2015 WVUE. All rights reserved.

  • Local NewsMore>>

  • One man killed in Seventh Ward shooting

    One man killed in Seventh Ward shooting

    (Source: Associated Press)(Source: Associated Press)
    (Source: Associated Press)(Source: Associated Press)

    New Orleans Police are investigating a shooting in the Seventh Ward. It happened near the intersection of St. Anthony and North Rocheblave streets. Officials say one man was shot and then later died at a local hospital. NOPD issued an alert about the shooting at 11:42 p.m., but it is not clear exactly when the shooting occurred. No further information is immediately available. FOX 8 will continue to update this story as it develops. Copyright 2018 WVUE. All rights reser...

    more>>

    New Orleans Police are investigating a shooting in the Seventh Ward. It happened near the intersection of St. Anthony and North Rocheblave streets. Officials say one man was shot and then later died at a local hospital. NOPD issued an alert about the shooting at 11:42 p.m., but it is not clear exactly when the shooting occurred. No further information is immediately available. FOX 8 will continue to update this story as it develops. Copyright 2018 WVUE. All rights reser...

    more>>
  • Bayou Boogaloo bounces back after severe storm

    Bayou Boogaloo bounces back after severe storm

    What a difference a day makes. Severe storms Friday afternoon left Bayou Boogaloo in shambles with tents ripped from the ground and merchandise soaked. Saturday morning, you'd never know what hit them and how organizers scrambled to get the festival in tip-top shape before re-opening.

    more>>

    What a difference a day makes. Severe storms Friday afternoon left Bayou Boogaloo in shambles with tents ripped from the ground and merchandise soaked. Saturday morning, you'd never know what hit them and how organizers scrambled to get the festival in tip-top shape before re-opening.

    more>>
  • Man shot and killed in Luling, suspects arrested

    Man shot and killed in Luling, suspects arrested

    Source: RNNSource: RNN
    Source: RNNSource: RNN

    The St. Charles Parish Sheriff’s Office says a man is dead and two brothers are in custody following a shooting in Luling. 

    more>>

    The St. Charles Parish Sheriff’s Office says a man is dead and two brothers are in custody following a shooting in Luling. 

    more>>
  • Trending StoriesTrending StoriesMore>>

  • Texas school gunman: 'I'm going to kill you.' Then he fired

    Texas school gunman: 'I'm going to kill you.' Then he fired

    Saturday, May 19 2018 11:51 PM EDT2018-05-20 03:51:30 GMT
    Sunday, May 20 2018 7:34 AM EDT2018-05-20 11:34:03 GMT
    (Jennifer Reynolds/The Galveston County Daily News via AP). April Salinas, second from right, her daughters Meah, 13, and Macee, 6, and Jeramiah Kelley read notes left at memorial behind Texas First Bank, Saturday, May 19, 2018 in Santa Fe, Texas. A gu...(Jennifer Reynolds/The Galveston County Daily News via AP). April Salinas, second from right, her daughters Meah, 13, and Macee, 6, and Jeramiah Kelley read notes left at memorial behind Texas First Bank, Saturday, May 19, 2018 in Santa Fe, Texas. A gu...

    The mother of one slain student said her daughter may have been targeted because she rejected advances from the suspect, who was an ex-boyfriend of her daughter's best friend.

    more>>

    The mother of one slain student said her daughter may have been targeted because she rejected advances from the suspect, who was an ex-boyfriend of her daughter's best friend.

    more>>
  • Mother jailed after son mistakenly tests positive for cocaine

    Mother jailed after son mistakenly tests positive for cocaine

    Saturday, May 19 2018 11:47 AM EDT2018-05-19 15:47:38 GMT
    Saturday, May 19 2018 12:43 PM EDT2018-05-19 16:43:34 GMT

    Starla McCray spent three days in jail after her son tested positive for cocaine. The hospital now says it was all a mistake and that there was an error in the test.

    more>>

    Starla McCray spent three days in jail after her son tested positive for cocaine. The hospital now says it was all a mistake and that there was an error in the test.

    more>>
  • After The Royal Wedding: Get a look at what happened next

    After The Royal Wedding: Get a look at what happened next

    Saturday, May 19 2018 5:15 PM EDT2018-05-19 21:15:53 GMT
    The Duke and Duchess of Sussex (Kensington Palace)The Duke and Duchess of Sussex (Kensington Palace)
    The Duke and Duchess of Sussex (Kensington Palace)The Duke and Duchess of Sussex (Kensington Palace)

    The world watched as American actress Meghan Markle married Prince Harry at St. George's Chapel in Windsor Saturday.

    more>>

    The world watched as American actress Meghan Markle married Prince Harry at St. George's Chapel in Windsor Saturday.

    more>>
Powered by Frankly