An Elk River man was sentenced to 90 days in jail on July 19 after pleading guilty to secretly recording girls and women in a locker room at a Mall of America store and elsewhere.
Trevor Nielson, 42, has pleaded guilty to one count of criminal interference with a minor, according to the Hennepin County District Attorney’s Office. He was given a three-year reprieve, which means a jail sentence will not be handed down and his conviction will be downgraded to a misdemeanor as long as he meets the terms of his probation.
He needs to undergo sex offender treatment, according to the Hennepin County District Attorney’s Office.
Elk River Police also laid felony charges against Nielson on January 8 in Sherburne County 10th District Court. This case is still making its way through the system, says Elk River Police Captain Joe Gacke
The charges stem from information gathered by law enforcement in Hennepin County and have triggered a separate investigation.
Nielson was first charged in Hennepin County after an incident in September 2019 in which a Forever 21 official in the Mall of America called police to report that someone had put cameras in his locker room.
The official also told law enforcement that she reported a similar incident in July and believed the same man was in the store’s changing rooms.
Officers grabbed Nielson when he came out of a changing room and the manager identified him as the same man he was in the July incident. Police found Nielsen’s cell phone and a roll of black double-sided tape while searching him. A camera was found hidden in a changing room next to one occupied by Nielsen.
Authorities executed a search warrant for Nielson’s phone and found videos of both incidents. A lengthy investigation resulted in felony charges and evidence he did in stores, swimming pools and a high school in the Twin Cities area, the Hennepin County District Attorney’s Office said on the 3rd. September 2020.
Additionally, they found videos of Elk River High School students and girls at local pools and parks. Some videos were shot from a camera attached to Nielson’s shoe. The complaint states that Nielsen accidentally recorded himself in a mirror in one of those videos.
Elk River Police concluded that the videos involving Elk River High School were not shot inside the school, but rather during a school-sanctioned event that took place. took place outside of high school, according to then-police captain Bob Kluntz. The police captain also noted that, while inappropriate, these particular videos were not of a criminal nature. There was, however, other incriminating data found during investigations that led to charges here. The Star News filed a criminal complaint at the end of the week and will follow up on the allegations.