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Jones wants sex charges dropped

By Staff | Apr 6, 2009

An attorney for a 39-year-old Blue Earth man facing three sex charges involving two female juveniles wants two of the counts dropped.

Defense attorney Bill Grogin and Bryan Wayne Jones appeared in Faribault County District Court during a contested omnibus hearing held Monday.

Jones has been charged with third-degree criminal sexual conduct involving a 16-year-old girl; possessing child pornography; and exhibiting, selling, printing, offering or giving obscene material to a juvenile.

Grogin says under state law it’s not a crime to have sex with a 16-year-old, unless the person is in a position of authority.

“Usually we are talking about a sports coach, police officer, pastor, teacher or a person taking on a parental role,” he says. “I don’t believe that applies to a camping outing with other people there.”

By Thursday, the defense attorney had submitted written arguments challenging the third-degree charge.

County Attorney Brian Roverud has until this Thursday to file a response.

Grogin also is questioning the charge of having obscene material. He understands it is based on an animation and that under state law, that is not considered obscene.

“The judge will decide if there’s probable cause to see if a jury should decide the case,” Roverud says.

The county attorney provided Grogin with police reports and interviews, and copies of photos found on cellphones.

Roverud says the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension is working to improve the clarity of images found on the phones.

Jones was arrested Feb. 28 after Blue Earth police executed a search warrant at his home.

According to a court complaint, a school social worker tipped off authorities that a 14-year-old girl may have received inappropriate text messages on her cellphone and another 16-year-old girl was sent flowers at school on three occasions.

The 14-year-old admitted receiving a pornographic animation and messages from someone named “Bryan.”

Authorities confiscated Jones’ cellphone and allegedly found explicit images of the 16-year-old girl.

When interviewed, the 16-year-old said she and Jones had consensual sex at his home while no one else was there.

“I had sex with him,” she reportedly wrote in a notebook.

Jones denied having sex with the girl and said he viewed her as a daughter. He did admit that explicit pictures he received from the girl on his cellphone were of her.