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.”
UPDATE! AND ANOTHER ONE!!
Daniel Simmons, 34, of Pike Creek, Del., who also happens to be a Delaware deputy attorney general with the New Castle County Misdemeanor Trial Unit, was arrested by the New Castle County Police on May 2 and charged with four counts of fourth-degree rape in connection with a series of alleged assaults on a 16-year-old boy who police say he met through “Grindr,” a social media app that connects gay and bisexual males. Officer Tracey Duffy, a spokesperson for the New Castle County Police, said the investigation into Simmons began a few months ago after information regarding Simmons and his victim first surfaced.
Duffy said that Simmons was “identified as the perpetrator early in the investigation,” according to USA Today. Police concluded their investigation into Simmons on Friday and wasted no time informing the state Attorney General’s Office and issuing arrest warrants for Simmons’ arrest. Interestingly enough, the Delaware Attorney General’s Office is known for its fight against child sexual abuse, and reported Friday that Simmons was immediately placed on administration leave after being notified about his arrest.
Beau Biden, the state Attorney General, has a history of waging war against child sexual abuse predators and worked to create the state’s Child Predator Unit within the Attorney General’s Office with the mission of “proactively identifying child predators over the internet, while aggressively investigating and prosecuting traditional crimes against children.”
Biden is quoted in a March 15, 2007 Delaware Voice column as saying the reason he ran for state Attorney General was to attack the problem of child sex abuse by creating the Child Predator Unit.
Police say that Simmons’ connection with his victim were outside of his prosecutorial duties as a deputy attorney general and confirmed that he approached and met the boy through social media. Jason Miller, a spokesperson for the Attorney General’s Office, said that “These charges are serious and will be addressed through the criminal justice system.”
Delaware Business Daily reported that police are concerned that there may be other child victims of Simmons’ out there, and are urging any other victims to come forward and get in touch with the New Castle County Police Department at 395-8110 (ATTN: Detective E. Sherkey). Tipsters can also call Delaware Crime Stoppers at (800) TIP-3333 or www.tipsubmit.com.