Last month, Illinois State Rep. Keith Farnham announced his immediate resignation from the position. Though he said at the time his decision was based on health concerns, his recent arrest cast doubt on the actual reason behind the Democrat’s move.
The 66-year-old had state-owned computers seized by federal authorities just before his resignation; and along with evidence found on his personal computers, officials prepared multiple charges related to child pornography and allegations of sexual abuse.
An investigation reportedly began into Farnham’s online activity when the Department of Homeland Security received a tip that a specific email account was being used to exchange child pornography.
Not only did officials determine he was involved in a conspiracy to trade hundreds of videos and images of child pornography; he admitted to raping a six-year-old girl in one online chat and expressed his twisted predilection during a number of other conversations.
“12 is about as old as i [sic] can handle,” he wrote in one exchange. “i love them at 6 7 8 [sic].”
He shared a graphic account of his sexual abuse of a young girl in a conversation with an individual authorities are calling “User A.”
Though that portion of the exchange is distressing enough, he allegedly also wrote in the same conversation that he wished he “had access to all the videos and pics ever made.”
During his time in the state legislature, his colleagues said they never expected he would have been involved in such behavior. In fact, Farnham was behind two bills that would make the punishment for possessing child pornography even harsher.
“Those of us who know him I don’t think would have suspected this,” said State Sen. Mike Noland.
Others, including Democrat State Rep. Mary Flowers, are not yet willing to concede the fact that the authorities’ allegations are correct.
“I don’t want to cast him off as being guilty until he’s been found guilty,” she said.
Ed Schock, the former mayor of Farnham’s hometown of Elgin, said he could scarcely comprehend the magnitude of the charges.
“It’s hard to really get my head around,” he concluded.
Farnham is expected to make his first court appearance Wednesday.
Photo Credit: Kskhh (Creative Commons)