Jesse Ryan Loskarn appeared before a federal magistrate judge shortly after 2 p.m. on Thursday, wearing what looked like the same rumpled gray sweater and blue jeans he was arrested in about 24 hours earlier, when he was still chief of staff to Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn.
Loskarn hired a team of lawyers to represent him in the second-floor courtroom, just blocks from the Capitol building where he had been employed since 2000. Alexander hired his legislative director, David Cleary, to replace Loskarn as his chief of staff following the arrest.
Loskarn said, “Yes, sir,” when Magistrate Judge John M. Facciola asked if he understood the charges of possession and attempt to distribute child pornography filed against him.
Federal prosecutor Mi Yung Park, who works in the Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section of the Department of Justice, asked that Loskarn remain in the custody of U.S. Marshals on the grounds that he is a “flight risk” and a danger to the community, as he is being charged with a crime of violence involving a minor.
The judge granted her request and scheduled a bond hearing for Monday at 9:30 a.m., over the objection of defense attorney Pamela Satterfield, who said her client did not need additional time to prepare for the hearing.
Loskarn will remain in the custody of U.S. Marshals until Monday morning, when he will have the opportunity to enter a plea.
If convicted on all charges, he could face up to 30 years in prison. Possession of child pornography warrants a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison, and distribution charges have a maximum sentence of 20 years, according to Justice Department spokesman Peter Carr.
Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., right, hugs Harold Schaitberger, General President of the International Association of Fire Fighters, after the Congressman spoke at the IAFF's Legislative Conference General Session at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill, March 9, 2015. The day featured addresses by members of Congress and Vice President Joe Biden.