Cuyahoga Falls looking into porn left on computer used by ex-mayor

By STeve wiandt | Falls News-Press Published:

Members of the Cuyahoga Falls administration are looking into pornographic material and campaign information Mayor Don Walters said was found on the mayor's computer that date back to before he took office in January.

Walters said "tons of bizarre porn" was stumbled upon by his administrative assistant trying to help Walters find a letter he had typed before his computer was updated.

The mayor said his assistant went into the "P-drive," or personal drive, on his computer to try to retrieve his document, not realizing he only saved it to his desktop and not to his hard drive, which backs up on the city's computer server.

"When she clicked on the P-drive … Boom! It lit up with all these crazy files with crazy names. And I said, 'Oh, no. This isn't good,'" Walters said. He could tell by the names the subjects were "unsavory." Opening a couple of the files to see what they were caused "our jaws to drop," he said.

Without going into detail, he said the photos depicted naked people having sex. "A lot of strange things I would call bizarre," he said.

Walters said he called in his law director, Russ Balthis, for advice.

Balthis has looked at all the images and did not see anything that he believed involved children, Walters said.

They called the finance director, Bryan Hoffman, who is supervising the information department, to find out how to get the questionable material quarantined and taken off of the hard drive. Hoffman sought the aid of John Konich, the director of the IT department.

According to Walters, Konich said about 10 years ago the former mayor, Don Robart, was having problems with his computer and asked Konich for help.

While helping fix the problem, Konich alleged he "saw all the porn" on the mayor's hard drive, according to Walters.

"He told the mayor a lot of these things have viruses and you really shouldn't be doing that," Walters said. "So he cleaned off all that and put it on a CD disc and gave it to the mayor and said, 'Here's all the stuff that was on your computer. We wiped it clean … It looks like, from what I saw, from 2003 to 2013, it continued."

Konich confirmed to the Falls News-Press April 16 that this situation did happen roughly 10 years ago and it was addressed at that time.

Robart did not immediately return a call for comment. According to Ohio.com, Robart is denying all of the allegations.

Walters said the files that were backed up on the city server could have carried viruses, putting residents' personal data at risk.

In addition to pornography, spreadsheets showing where campaign signs were posted were also found on the hard drive, which leads to ethical questions, according to Walters.

Walters said he talked to Police Chief Jack Davis about the situation, but the city's police department is not doing an investigation.

"We did not turn it over to him," Walters said.

Balthis has contacted the Summit County prosecutor for advice, Walters said, as well as the Ohio Ethics Commission and the Secretary of State.

Email: swiandt@recordpub.com

Phone: 330-541-9420

Facebook: SteveWiandtFallsNewsPress

Twitter: @SteveWiandt_RPC

Want to leave your comments?

Sign in or Register to comment.