College Park, Maryland, mayor, Patrick Wojahn, was arrested last Thursday and was charged with 56 counts of possession and distribution of child pornography.
“We are shocked and disturbed by the news; what has come to light in this investigation is a total surprise to us. The city knows that this news is distressing and difficult for our community, and we encourage our residents to seek any help they feel necessary to work through this trying time,” the city said in a statement published on March March 2s is an on-going and active investigation. The city will respect the process of this investigation and will cooperate fully with requests for information. All related media inquiries about the arrest and charges should be directed to the Prince George’s County Police Department.”
Wojahn allegedly uploaded and shared videos featuring sexual acts between prepubescent boys and adult men to the social media app Kik in early January, the Washington Post reported.
According to authorities, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children flagged the account and sent it to the Prince George’s County police. On February 2February 28stigators acquired a warrant to search Wojahn’s College Park home. Court documents show that Wojahn confirmed the Kik account was his.
“I have cooperated fully, and will continue to cooperate, with law enforcement,” Wojahn wrote in his resignation letter. “While this investigation does not involve any official city business of any kind, it is in the best interests of our community that I step aside and not serve as a distraction.”
Investigators also obtained a warrant for Kik and ordered the social media platform to turn over content related to Wojahn’s account. Court papers show that there were about two dozen videos and images showing sex acts with boys, police said.
The now-former mayor faces charges for 40 misdemeanor counts of possession of child exploitative material and 16 felony counts of distribution of child exploitative material.
Wojahn served as mayor of College Park for seven years and on the City Council for eight years before that. Mayor Pro Tem Denise Mitchell will preside over the office until a new mayor is sworn in following a special election, which will take place within 60 days. The people selected as mayor in the special election will hold the position until a new mayor is chosen in this year’s General Election.
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Brian A. Jackson
Milton Quintanilla is a freelance writer and content creator. He is a contributing writer for Christian Headlines and the host of the For Your Soul Podcast, a podcast devoted to sound doctrine and biblical truth. He holds a Masters of Divinity from Alliance Theological Seminary.