LUZERNE COUNTY, Pa. -- A veteran state lawmaker has been charged with possessing child pornography.
Less than a day after State Senator Mike Folmer was charged, the Republican lawmaker has resigned his seat. His arrest left Harrisburg stunned.
Many people are asking why would a man with a family, and a prominent job turn to child porn.
Folmer has not made any public statement about the allegations and has only been charged at this time.
“The things you have to look, one the proliferation and the accessibility of child pornography, decades ago you had to go to some dark alley and meet with some dark character and get it,” said Tom Dougherty, a licensed clinician, who is among those approved by the state`s sexual offenders assessment board to treat those with sexual predator tendencies.
He believes the most common way people get into child pornography is that they have an addiction to porn.
“But then it gets old, like everything gets old, so they want to move onto something new and exciting and taboo and what they haven`t seen yet is child pornography,” said Dougherty.
Suzanne Beck with the Victims Resource Center in Wilkes-Barre, stresses this is not a victimless crime.
“They have to go on not knowing who has seen these images, how many people have seen these images,” said Beck. “Really going through life wondering, has this person seen these images or these videos?”
One of the locations where Tom Dougherty treats people is here at his office inside the state parole building in downtown Scranton.
He says people can be in treatment for years, in some cases a lifetime.
“You treat them in treatment to self-police their own actions, to be aware of their own actions and what steps to take if they`re confronted by an overwhelming kind of urge or situation,” said Dougherty.
Senator Folmer is scheduled to be in court on September 26.