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Ex-Indiana college president charged in Wis. sex sting

Thomas Minar (Source: Door County Sheriff's Office)
Thomas Minar (Source: Door County Sheriff's Office)(NBC15)
Published: Jan. 15, 2020 at 4:29 PM CST
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The former president of an Indiana college was charged in Door County Wednesday with child enticement, using a computer to facilitate a child sex crime, and exposing a child to harmful material.

Thomas Minar will make his initial appearance on charges on January 27.

The criminal complaint alleges Minar was visiting Sturgeon Bay on January 6 when he struck up a conversation with "Tyler" on a gay chat app. Tyler was actually an undercover officer. His profile said he was 19 years old, but he quickly told Minar he's 15 and was using the app while in class at Sturgeon Bay High School.

Minar continued chatting with "Tyler" on and off for several hours on January 6, sharing sexual photos, and eventually arranging to meet the boy at a fast-food restaurant in Sturgeon Bay.

Police were there waiting for him.

Minar told investigators he's a "distinguished person" in higher education, and he was striking up a friendship with the boy because he thinks young gay people need "non-sexual affirmations and mentorship."

Minar eventually admitted talking to the boy was a "fantasy chat" but said he would not have had sexual contact with a 15-year-old.

Minar was fired from his position as president of Franklin College in Indiana as soon as Sturgeon Bay police informed college officials of his arrest.

Franklin College is a liberal arts college located about 20 miles south of Indianapolis.

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