Saturday, October 13, 2007
Big Gay Al Oertwig: Surfed for Adult Erotica
A police investigation has cleared a former St. Paul school board member of viewing child pornography on a university library computer -- although "adult erotica" was found.
Al Oertwig (ORT'-wig) resigned amid the investigation into his alleged conduct at the Metropolitan State University library.
Police have cleared former St. Paul school board member Al Oertwig of looking at child pornography at a university library computer, though the investigation concluded there was adult porn on the computer.
Security looked up the identification number of the man who using the computer at the time and found it belonged to Oertwig. The number had been logged in at the computer from 1:45 p.m. until 1:59 p.m.
The security officer who saw what the man had been watching described it as three adult males wearing leather hoods over their faces and having sex with three juvenile males.
"The juvenile males did not appeared (sic) to be dwarfs or short adults," the report said.
Metro State staff removed the computer from the library after the incident. The investigation was delayed, in part, because the state attorney general's [sic] office said the university couldn't consent to a search of the computer, according to a supplemental police report.
Police filed a search warrant in August to view the computer. Oertwig said police never contacted him about the case.
When investigators viewed the computer, they found a folder identified with Oertwig's Metro State ID number, according to a supplemental report filed by a Minnesota Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force sergeant. In the folder, there was "adult erotica" and "pornography," but none involved juveniles, the report said.
"Although some of the images were similar to portions of images described by Metro State Security, none of the images were identical to descriptions and no images contained minors," the report said.
This past April, Minnesota Public Radio reported:
St. Paul school board member Al Oertwig, the district's longest-serving board member, said he would resign rather than fight claims that he viewed child pornography on a library computer.
"The allegation of child pornography is absolutely, totally false," Oertwig said, but added that he is stepping down after nearly 20 years to avoid a distraction for the district. "Whether it's true or false, it's going to be out there for months," he said.
By Thursday morning, Oertwig had sent an e-mail saying he intended to resign immediately to the board chairman, said district spokesman Casey Mahon.
So, along comes Andy Birkey at Minnesota Monitor publishing a post titled: "Oertwig Cleared of Allegations, but Prejudice Lingers":
Police on Tuesday told reporters that their investigation into the allegations indicated that Al Oertwig had not been viewing child pornography.
While police have cleared Oertwig, the reaction to the April allegations lingers to this day on some conservative Minnesota blogs. No retractions, no apologies for smearing a public servant, and not even an update that the case had turned out differently than they had alleged. Here are a few examples:
And bloggers tried to tie the wild assertions of Oertwig being a pedophile to the DFL. "Have I mentioned Al is a Democrat? Did I mention that somewhere above? Well, if I didn't, I just want to mention that Uncle Pervy Oertwig is a Democrat. Apparently one with a fondness for underage boys," wrote conservative Minnesota blogger, David Drake. "But maybe not...I'm sure he has nothing but the very best intentions for all the students. Especially the boys between ages 12-16."
If anyone, male, female, straight, gay, bisexual - whatever - would have been doing what Oertwig was doing, I would have approached the story the same. That Oertwig is a gay man has nothing to do with how I wrote the April post except, perhaps, that I used some humor in a photoshop image and describing him as Uncle Pervy Big Gay Al Oertwig. Uncle Pervy is a reference to the rock opera "Tommy", by the Who and the character Uncle Ernie, Tommy's "wicked uncle", a child molester. Big Gay Al Oertwig is an obvious link to anyone familiar with the animated "South Park" character Big Gay Al. Both terms are meant to be taken with a huge dose of sarcasm, as the byline at the top page of my blog states: "Unabashedly Practicing The Art of Caustic Sarcasm Where Appropriate."
Big Gay Al Oertwig
Andy, I didn't "tie wild assertions of Oertwig being a pedophile to the DFL" any more or less than Democrats tried to tie Mark Foley and pedophilia to the Republican party. I simply published a story on Oertwig that included a healthy dose of sarcasm in light of the accusations against him compared to his rather defensive reaction to the charges.
Let's return to the MPR story of April:
According to a police report, Metropolitan State University security officials caught a man watching child porn on a library computer last month and concluded the man had logged on as Oertwig.
Oertwig, 62, has not been arrested or charged with a crime.
Even if police verify Oertwig was viewing the material, he might not be charged. State law isn't clear about whether watching child porn on a computer constitutes possession of illegal pornography, said Jack Rhodes, spokesman for the Ramsey County attorney's office. Possession of child pornography is a felony punishable by up to five years in prison.
St. Paul police were called to the Metropolitan State University library, which shares a building with the city's Dayton's Bluff branch library, on March 30 after a patron told a security officer that a man was watching porn on a computer.
The security officer saw the man watching a pornographic video of what appeared to be three adult men and three boys, the police report said. When the officer tapped the man on the shoulder and told him to log off, the man apologized, gathered his belongings and began to leave. The officer told the man to stop, but he ran away, the report said.
Security officers linked the library identification number on the computer to Oertwig, the report said. They also obtained images of the man from security cameras, but the police report didn't say whether investigators asked the security officer to confirm the images.
He said Wednesday that having to respond to stories like the one about the rental notice had drained him.
"Because I've gone through too much, I'm simply not going to fight again," he said. "I'm just tired of being unfairly attacked."
Here is what we know according to the security officials:
* MSU security officials caught a man watching something objectionable on a public computer after being tipped off by a library patron.
* A security officer says he saw the man watching what appeared to be three men and three boys.
* The man logged off the computer.
* The man was told to stop (or wait) but instead he ran away.
* The library ID number on the computer was linked to Oertwig.
There are plenty of questions about this story that remain unanswered. Oertwig could clear these up, but he has consistently refused to do so:
* Why did Oertwig run away if he had nothing to hide and was not doing anything objectionable?
* Do people who have nothing to hide, or are not guilty or ashamed of anything run away?
* Why would he say he's unwilling to fight the accusation if he is completely innocent?
* Why would Oertwig resign from the school board if he didn't do anything improper?
* Has or did Oertwig ever admit or deny that he did not log on to that library computer using his library ID number?
* Has he ever stated that someone stole his library card?
Andy Birkey concludes his post with the following paragraph:
Do bloggers have a responsibility to retract these kind of inaccurate and, in my opinion, hateful statements or at least follow the story to its conclusion? Those statements will remain part of the world wide web for a long time to come, some as long as the web exists. A future employer, a distant family member or anyone else interested in finding out about Al Oertwig will find bloggers accusing him of illegal behavior involving children. Not to mention that his reputation is permanently ruined.
Oertwig is the only person responsible for his reputation, for good or for bad. He alone is solely responsible for his actions. Had he not committed the actions of which he is accused, none of this would have happened let alone be newsworthy.
As far as you writing about my April post, "And bloggers tried to tie the wild assertions of Oertwig being a pedophile to the DFL," well - the Democrats do have their members of pedophiles in their party: Gerry Studds, Fred Richmond, Mel Reynolds and Dan Sutton to name a few. Nor are the Republicans clear and free from their own members who have committed actions similar to Studds, Richmond, Reynolds and Sutton. Not by a long shot.
Andy, are you policing your fellow Democrats to see if they have retracted any of their false allegations of Mark Foley being a pedophile? Because all Foley was guilty of was very poor judgment and poor taste in e-mails and instant messages with pages. You will find that I wrote about Foley and condemned him for his poor judgment in writing explicit e-mails and instant messages to pages. No facts or actual cases were ever proven that Foley had a physical relationship or physical contact with any of the pages. If you are monitoring Dems and asking them to withdraw their refrains that Foley is a pedophile, then I tip my hat to you, Andy.
Oertwig's library behavior and his subsequent behavior of running away from the library and his resignation from the school board are, at best, questionable as to why he acted in the manner that he did. That doesn't mean he's innocent. This doesn't mean he is guilty. The criminal case against O.J. Simpson was inconclusive, but most people know who committed the murders. And no, I'm not comparing Oertwig to Simpson, only the evidence - or some would say the inconclusive evidence - against both of them.
You...sarcastic Moloson...naaaaw. Really?
Naw. Just kidding. I was being sarcastic again. Ha. Ha. Ha. I love to keep the Lems on their toes.
The Lems are having a tough week. First Harry 'Milky' Reid's approval rating dropped below that of Georgina and then the Lems get totally owned by Rush over that whole 'phoney soldier' flap. I'm going to have to change the definition of Lem from Liberal Dem to Loser Dem. aaaaHaHaHaHaHaHaHa. Loooooosers.
Or so I hear.....
Take care! Thanks for comments, as always.
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