Charges: Twin Cities gymnastics coach had sexually explicit interactions with student

A New Brighton man is facing criminal charges after he was accused of having inappropriate interactions with one of his students for several years.

Charging documents state that Brooklyn Park police started a potential sexual misconduct investigation on Aug. 3, 2022, after a mandated reporter contacted officers and said the victim’s gymnastics coach had inappropriate contact with him.

David Robert Carlson, 35, was charged earlier this month with engaging in electronic communications involving sexual conduct with a child and distributing sexual material to a child via electronic communications. Each carries a maximum penalty of three years in jail and a $5,000 fine.

A criminal complaint states that the victim was part of a trampoline and tumbling program at two different schools as a child. Carlson was his coach the entire time and the behavior happened from 2015 to 2019.

The victim told authorities that Carlson “crossed inappropriate lines,” according to the complaint, sending pictures on Snapchat and pornographic videos, talking about genitalia, encouraging drug use, and offering to buy him marijuana. The victim added that Carlson also sent sexually explicit videos of himself.

When police talked to Carlson, the complaint states that he confirmed many of the allegations, adding that they had talked about sex and drugs, exchanged sexually explicit materials, and talked about genitalia. He also admitted that he knew the conversations were inappropriate.

Carlson is charged via summons and isn’t in custody at this time. He made his initial court appearance this week and has another hearing set for Sept. 14.