BURNSVILLE, Minn. (WCCO) — A 56-year-old Twin Cities hockey coach is accused of sexually touching a student.
Court documents show James Brent Vandusartz has been charged with criminal sexual conduct in the third degree after being arrested Thursday.
Vandusartz is suspended from his job at Blake School. He coached the Junior Varsity Girls Hockey Team. He’s also known for coaching goalies from other teams in the Twin Cities.
Police said the victim is not a Blake student and the alleged incident did not happen at the Blake School campus in Hopkins. Police believe it happened at the coach’s own home off of West Preserve Boulevard in Burnsville.
The student, between 16 and 18 years old, reportedly came to the home “multiple times” for some type of hockey coaching. The sexual incident allegedly happened a week ago while the student was there.
According to court papers, Vandusartz told a Burnsville police officer it was possible he sexually touched the student “in the heat of the moment,” but he’s not exactly sure.
That student called police and gave them voicemail messages Vandusartz is accused of leaving, along with e-mails he allegedly sent.
Police then arranged for a phone call and listened in as the two set up another meeting at the coach’s home.
In that phone call, Vandusartz told the student he “felt there was a spark between them,” and while they didn’t have to be “lovers, he thought the student enjoyed getting pleasure from him and he enjoyed giving it.”
Officers came along to the meeting and arrested Vandusartz, who is out of jail Monday night.
Blake School said they learned of the arrest last Thursday, immediately suspended Vandusartz pending an investigation, told him to stay away from students and their families and contacted parents of all of the students he may have potentially coached at Blake. They also met with all of the current players on the Varsity and Junior Varsity girls hockey teams to offer counseling and support.
Blake urged anyone with information that might help in the investigation, including other possible instances of misconduct, to call police or certain high-level school administrators.
WCCO-TV’s James Schugel Reports