Kimball football coach put on leave, district cooperating with police investigation

Eric Chaloux
Updated: July 16, 2020 05:42 PM
Created: October 22, 2019 12:00 AM

Kimball Area Public Schools put head football coach and special education teacher Johnny Benson on administrative leave after a complaint had been filed on the morning of Oct. 10, the district says.

That same day, the Stearns County Sheriff’s Office and Kimball Police Department received a report of a possible sexual assault involving the coach and a player, according to a search warrant.


“The district is cooperating with the law enforcement investigation to the extent permissible by law,” wrote Kimball school officials in an email to 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS.

5 EYEWITNESS NEWS made attempts to speak with Benson, including stopping at his family home, but a woman at the address asked the reporter to leave.

A search warrant says authorities were called to St. Cloud Hospital on Oct. 10 to investigate a "possible sexual assault" after a player's family felt he “wasn't himself.”

The warrant alleged the player recalls being treated by the coach for a lower back injury in the locker room after practice.

But the warrant goes on to say the player doesn't remember if he "had fallen asleep or what had happened" for the next three hours when his mother found him alone in the locker room.

The Stearns County Sheriff's Office told 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS they have an open investigation.

No arrests or charges have been filed in the case.

Editor's note: The Stearns County Attorney declined to file charges in the investigation involving former teacher and football coach Johnny Benson in late May 2020. 

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