Charges: Duluth man recorded dozens of upskirt videos at Mall of America

- A 24-year-old Duluth man is charged after allegedly recording about 77 upskirt videos of dozens of females at the Mall of America in Bloomington this past summer.

Benjamin Thomas Goldsmith is charged with 30 counts of interfering with privacy. The practice of taking video of a woman's private parts by shooting video up her skirt or shorts without her knowledge is often called "upskirting."

According to the criminal complaint, on July 8 starting around 2:30 p.m., security officers had received reports of a man using a camera to take video underneath females' skirts. Around 7:37 p.m., a security guard spotted a man, later identified as Goldsmith, following a woman, who was wearing a short skirt, on the escalator. The man was holding a sweatshirt hoodie in his left hand. When the security officer stopped him at the top of the escalator and asked him what he was doing, Goldsmith muttered something and ran down an escalator toward the level one doors. Security officers chased him and stopped him.

Other witnesses told Bloomington police they saw Goldsmith walk by a woman, who was wearing a short skirt, four times near the Disney store. Mall surveillance video confirmed their statements.

After arresting Goldsmith, police found he had a Muscle Milk container, which he had modified to hide a camera inside. They also found camera batteries and a smartphone.

After completing a forensic analysis of Goldsmith's phone and camera, investigators found about 77 upskirt videos of 65 different female victims. Goldsmith's face also appears in most of the videos. He appeared to shoot the video by holding the camera low to the ground and either walking past the victims or standing closely behind them. 

Goldsmith is scheduled for a first appearance in court on February 12.

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