Police: Lawmaker's child downloaded topless image

12:06 PM, Oct 5, 2007   |    comments
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A House Democratic staffer says preliminary results of a State Highway Patrol investigation found that a child of Representative Matthew Barrett downloaded the image. The staffer spoke on condition of anonymity because the probe is ongoing. The image of a topless woman was projected after Barrett inserted a data memory stick into the computer for a lecture in Norwalk on how a bill becomes a law. Norwalk police have taken over the investigation from the highway patrol. They referred questions to the Huron County prosecutor's office, but that office declined comment. Barrett has also declined to make any further comments and has referred all further questions to the Ohio Democratic Caucus. Phil Saken, the caucus Communications Director released a statement issued by Barrett. "We want to put this behind us. From what we have learned thus far, this is an internal family matter. We would appreciate respect for our privacy as we deal with this situation." According to a published report in the Lorain Morning Journal, since the incident, Norwalk administrators have launched a new policy to review all materials in advance before they are presented to students. Saken, also released the following statement from House Democratic Leader, Joyce Beatty: ”"Matt Barrett is a good legislator and a good friend. This situation is a matter between him, his teenaged son and his family. This is not legislative, this is not political; this is purely personal. We consider this matter a moot point and I look forward to continuing to work with Matt in serving the people of Ohio."

WKYC-TV/The Associated Press

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