St. Paul police are looking for more potential victims of a man now accused of masturbating in the vicinity of a 10-year-old girl while at a public library.
Charges filed against Nicholas Barghini Monday say he offered an acting class at the Riverview Library in St. Paul Saturday. The group included the 10-year-old victim, as well as four other juvenile girls, Steve Linders with St. Paul police told GoMN.
During the afternoon class, the 31-year-old Barghini ushered the other four children out of the room and returned to the victim, according to the charges. He then had her take off her socks and shoes more than once, and after having her lie face-down on a couch, began masturbating while rubbing her bare feet with his face, the complaint says.
Police only learned of this because the victim told her mother she didn't want to go back because weird things happened. Her mother went to the library and asked for surveillance footage – that's when they saw what the charges accuse Barghini of doing.
Before seeing the video, the girls' mother confronted Barghini about it – he apologized for what he called an "acting technique" where she acted like she was in a “banana boat commercial," as he put it, the charges say.
He was arrested and booked Saturday, and declined to talk to investigators, the complaint says.
The library director told the Star Tribune the class was not a library-run effort, but put on by an area resident in the library's space.
1 more victim found, and police are looking for more
The surveillance footage prompted the library to look back to video from the last time Barghini taught a class – June 17, according to the charges.
The recordings from that date showed almost the same thing that happened to the 10-year-old Saturday: Barghini masturbating as a barefoot girl lay face-down on the couch, this time touching her socks and feet with his face, according to the charges.
Linders told GoMN Monday afternoon they have not identified that victim.
The charges against Barghini say when police searched his wallet, they found a card titled "What I want." It indicated he'd engaged in feet-related sex acts with pre-13 and 13- to 17-year-olds.
Police are looking for more information about the two incidents they're aware of – and they want to hear from anyone else who may have been a victim, Linders said.
If you have any information, you're asked to call St. Paul police at 651-266-5685.
Barghini is currently charged with one count of fifth-degree lewd exhibition, which carries a sentence of up to a year in prison and/or $3,000 fine if convicted.