The mayor of College Park was arrested this week on child pornography charges and has resigned from office.
Patrick Wojahn, 47, was charged with 56 counts of possession and distribution of child pornography with offenses dating between early January and late February, according to the Prince George’s County Police Department and online court records. .
The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children on Feb. 17 flagged a social media account in the county that “possessed and distributed suspected child pornography,” police said. Investigators linked the account to Wojahn.
Police searched Wojahn’s home on Tuesday and recovered multiple cell phones, a storage device, a tablet and a computer. He was arrested Thursday morning.
Assistant State’s Attorney Jessica Garth, the chief of the Special Victims and Family Violence Unit, said a Friday hearing will determine if Wojahn will remain in custody or receive bond for a pre-trial release.
Prince George’s County Police Chief Malik Aziz said that Wojahn is charged with 40 counts of possession of child exploitative material and 16 counts of distribution. He said he believes there will be additional charges.
Wojahn submitted his letter of resignation, which was effective immediately on Thursday, according to a statement from the City of College Park. He had served as mayor since 2015 and on the City Council since 2007.
In Wojahn’s resignation letter, he said the police’s investigation did not involve any official city business.
“I have cooperated fully, and will continue to cooperate, with law enforcement,” Wojahn wrote. “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.”
The city’s Mayor Pro Tem Denise Mitchell will serve as presiding officer until a special election is held and a new mayor is sworn in.