Skip to main content
Updated:
Original:

Assistant principal accused of using social media to talk to kids now faces child porn charges

Charges say he posed as a young teen named Brett Larson to talk to middle school kids.

An assistant principal accused of setting up fake social media profiles to talk to kids is now facing federal child pornography charges.

When investigators searched Brandon Bjerknes' devices earlier this year, they found "multiple sexually explicit photos and videos" of more than 50 kids, including some students who went to Bemidji Middle School, where he was the assistant principal, a news release from the U.S. Attorney's Office in Minnesota says.

Prosecutors allege Bjerknes, 34, would pose as "Brett Larson," a 13- to 15-year-old, on different social media accounts to talk to middle and high school-aged girls and boys. He would have "sexually explicit conversations" with them, and he would tell them to send him sexually explicit photos, charges say.

Bjerknes, who resigned from Bemidji Area Schools earlier this year, was taken into custody Tuesday. The U.S. Attorney's Office has now charged him with two counts of producing child porn, one count of distributing child porn, and one count of attempting to coerce and entice a minor.

He was previously arrested and charged in March by the Beltrami County Attorney's Office with engaging in electronic communication relating or describing sexual conduct with a child.

Investigators believe there may be more victims in connection to this case, so anyone with information is asked to call the Beltrami County Sheriff's Office at 218-333-9111 – anyone who calls may stay anonymous. 

Next Up

ilhan omar press conference voicemail screengrab 11.30.21

'You will not live much longer b***': Rep. Omar shares threatening voicemail

Omar's office received the call hours after Rep. Boebert posted her video about the MN congresswoman.

Screen Shot 2021-12-01 at 11.24.09 AM

ESPN's 'Booger' makes fun of Wild fans' record cup snake

He's the same guy who thought the "Minneapolis Miracle" was bad for the Vikings.

brian ingram

Woodfired Cantina closes at Keg and Case in St. Paul

Restaurateur Brian Ingram is focusing on growing his other concepts.

giant bear

Video: 'THE fattest bear we have ever seen' spotted on MN trail camera

"This might be THE fattest bear we have ever seen in our area," researchers said.

u.s. attorney

Guilty plea from man who stockpiled guns, equipment to make bombs, drugs

Prosecutors say he had multiple guns, items to make weapons and pipe bombs, and lab equipment to make drugs.

polaris Ranger XP Kinetic

Here is Polaris' new electric Ranger off-road vehicle

The Minnesota-based company unveiled the electric UTV on Wednesday.

MNWOSO_Aurora

MN women's soccer team narrows name, logo options to final 3

The winning nickname and logo will be announced in January.

Kirill Kaprizov

2nd period surge leads Wild to fourth straight win

With three goals in the second, the Wild blasted the last-place Coyotes.

Gopher Basketball / R.J. Stephens

Late-tip in helps Gophers pass first big test, improve to 6-0

Luke Loewe's bucket with 2.4 seconds remaining helped the Gophers stay undefeated.

Related

Charges: Assistant principal made fake social media accounts to solicit kids for sex

Officials are asking for the public's help to determine if there are any more victims.

Charges: Former Chanhassen principal had 127 child porn videos and photos

The 44-year-old is facing 10 more felony counts of having child porn.

Chanhassen High School principal resigns after child porn arrest, charges

The former principal is accused of seven felony counts of child pornography possession.

prison, jail

Plymouth man gets 12.5 years in prison for child porn charge

He would acquire and trade "diaper erotica" and other content involving kids.

Man faces more charges in Lake Minnetonka sex trafficking operation

He's been charged in both Washington and Hennepin counties.