- The Washington Times - Saturday, February 16, 2008

ANNAPOLIS — A Republican lawmaker who took a tough stance on sexual predators while serving in the state capital resigned yesterday amid reports that authorities had raided his home in search of child pornography.

Robert A. McKee, who has represented Washington County for 13 years in the House of Delegates and served as executive director of the county’s Big Brothers and Big Sisters chapter, abruptly announced his resignation after reports of the investigation surfaced.

Washington County Sheriff Douglas W. Mullendore said authorities searched Mr. McKee’s house in Halfway, Md., on Jan. 31 and seized personal computers as part of a child pornography investigation.

Mr. McKee, 58, said in a statement that the computers contained “images available on the Internet.” He did not elaborate on the nature of the images.

“For me, this is deeply embarrassing,” Mr. McKee said in the statement. “It reflects poorly on my service to the community as a state delegate and as executive director of Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Washington County. Accordingly, I am resigning today from both positions.”

Maryland lawmakers said they were saddened by the news.

“We are deeply troubled and shocked to hear of the investigation of Delegate McKee,” House Minority Leader Anthony J. O’Donnell, Southern Maryland Republican, and House Minority Whip Christopher B. Shank, Western Maryland Republican said in a joint statement. “We will refrain from commenting on the investigation and allow law-enforcement officers to do their job as the legal process moves forward. We are confident that the judicial system will thoroughly investigate this matter and take appropriate action as is warranted.”

Mr. McKee attended the full session in the House Thursday, but was not seen yesterday. His Republican colleagues yesterday looked uncharacteristically sullen as they left the morning House session, and quickly met in a caucus meeting.

The (Hagerstown, Md.) Herald-Mail broke the news of the search warrant yesterday.

Sheriff Mullendore said investigators conducted the search of the home after receiving a phone call from someone who told them about child pornography at the residence. The sheriff said that, in addition to several computers, investigators seized about 30 videotapes and printed material containing logs of different information.

Sheriff Mullendore said his department asked for FBI assistance, partly because the investigation involved a public figure. Charges have not been filed, and Sheriff Mullendore said he did not know when, or if, charges would be filed.

“I would suspect we’re talking weeks away at least,” he said.

Mr. McKee, who is unmarried, said he has entered treatment and that his “primary focus is to get well and stay well.”

Mr. McKee has co-sponsored several bills in recent years to crack down on child predators, including the denial of good-behavior credits for those convicted of child abuse, life imprisonment for those convicted of child abuse that results in death of the child and extended monitoring for convicted sex offenders.

Mr. McKee’s resignation takes effect Monday, a spokeswoman for House Speaker Michael E. Busch said.

Mr. Busch, Anne Arundel Democrat, was not available for comment.


Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times welcomes your comments on Spot.im, our third-party provider. Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.

 

Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide