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Posted at 3:49 PM ET, 11/25/2010

Hill staffer in sex sting released on bond

By Dan Morse

Congressional staffer Robert Decheine, one of 11 men caught up in a recent Montgomery County sex sting, showed up at an apartment complex expecting to go inside to meet a teenager, police said, but instead was greeted by police officers in the parking lot.

He was booked into the county jail and released on a $15,000 bond, according to police. He had been the chief of staff for U.S. Rep. Steve Rothman, D-NJ, and was fired over the incident.

"Mr. Decheine has just been charged at this point. He is presumed innocent," his attorney, Stanley Reed, said Thursday.

He declined to comment further, and said that Decheine had no comment at this time.

Here and here is more information about Decheine's career.

A friend of Decheine's who works on Capitol Hill said that he and others remain stunned by the news. "No one ever suspected this type of behavior," said the friend, who asked not to be named because he was not authorized by his employer to discuss the matter. "It broadsided all of Bob's friends."

Dechiene had carved out as a reputation as someone who was fair and willing to listen, the friend said, but not afraid to flex his political muscle. "A very smart political operative," the staffer said.

Gaithersburg police spokesman Dan Lane said Decheine was picked up as part of a larger sting led by Gaithersburg officers and involving officers from Montgomery County police, Maryland state police and the FBI.

In the sting, police placed a personal advertisement on a website, which had a photo of a young-looking woman, Lane said. Once men responded, undercover police would speak to them by phone, e-mail or text messages, Lane said. At some point during this correspondence, an undercover officer told the suspects she was 15 years old, Lane said.

Police set up phony meetings at an apartment complex on McCausland Place in Gaithersburg. From Nov. 15 to 19, they arrested 11 men who came to the complex, Lane said.

All were picked up in the parking lot and taken to Gaithersburg headquarters for questioning. "They were shocked to see us," Lane said.

Lane said Decheine was the only suspect of such notoriety, and only by pure coincidence. As a courtesy, and understanding that his name would generate attention, authorities notified Rothman's office and found them cooperative, Lane said.

What follows are the names of the 11 suspects who were charged in the case. In past stings, some defendants have said that they did not know there person they were communicated with was underage.

Scott D. Selfridge, 37, of the 1100 block of Nestle Quarry Road in Falling Waters, West Virginia, was arrested on Nov. 15 and charged with one count of sexual solicitation of a minor. He was released after posting a $25,000 bond.

James W. Torrence, 61, of the 900 block of Bergan Street in Bel Air, was arrested on Nov. 15 and charged with one count of sexual solicitation of a minor. He was released after posting a $25,000 bond.

Frederick John Geidel, 43, of the 18600 block of Broken Oak Road in Boyds was arrested on Nov. 16 and charged with one count of sexual solicitation of a minor. He was released after posting a $25,000 bond.

Anderson Min Yao, 35, of the 13200 block of Catawba Manor Way in Clarksburg, was arrested on Nov. 16 and charged with one count of sexual solicitation of a minor. He was released after posting a $25,000 bond.

Neerji Tewari, 47, of the 11300 block of Berger Terrace in Potomac, was arrested on Nov. 16 and charged with one count of sexual solicitation of a minor. He was released after posting a $75,000 bond.

Anthony Douglas Hammonds, 36, of the 11900 block of Coverstone Hill Circle in Manassas, Virginia, was arrested on Nov. 17 and charged with one count of sexual solicitation of a minor. He was released after posting a $10,000 bond.

Kyu Hwan Yeo, 28, of the 100 block of Canfield Hill Drive in Gaithersburg, was arrested on Nov. 18 and charged with one count of sexual solicitation of a minor. He was released after posting a $10,000 bond.

Robert Bruce Decheine, 48, of the 500 block of 12th Street NE Washington, D.C., was arrested on Nov. 18 and charged with one count of sexual solicitation of a minor. He was released after posting a $15,000 bond.

Michael San Augustin Carpio, 32, of the 8000 block of Carlean Court in Pasadena, was arrested on Nov. 18 and charged with one count of sexual solicitation of a minor. He was released after posting a $10,000 bond.

David Scott Pfarr, 51, of the 15000 block of Water Oak Drive in Darnestown, was arrested on Nov. 19 and charged with one count of sexual solicitation of a minor. He was released after posting a $10,000 bond.

William D. Martinez, 25, of the 7700 block of Emerson Road in Hyattsville, was arrested on Nov. 19 and charged with one count of sexual solicitation of a minor. He was released after posting a $10,000 bond.

This item has been updated since it was first published.


By Dan Morse  | November 25, 2010; 3:49 PM ET
Categories:  Montgomery, Updates  
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Comments

I didn't realize there were so many desperate men out there! Very sad commentary that they couldn't meet women their own age through normal channels. But on the other hand, what normal woman would want to meet creeps like them?

Posted by: gm2525 | November 25, 2010 9:27 PM | Report abuse

these talk show like sting set ups are pure entrapment. there is no under aged girl so there is no crime. there are enough real criminals out there that the police should be going after. Unless any of these men also had child porn on their computer, i'd find them all not guilty if i was on the jury. most people lie about their age when trying to hook up online, and those arrested were actually speaking to an officer who was of legal age. Parents need to monitor their childrens online activity and they should report suspicious activity to the police, that is where an investigation should begin.

Posted by: MarilynManson | November 26, 2010 10:45 AM | Report abuse

Just because there was no 15 year old girl doesn't mean that no crime occurred. Attempt and solicitation are crimes. "A shot at B, A missed, is there a crime?" Yes, ATTEMPTED murder.

Posted by: nsu1203 | November 26, 2010 11:46 AM | Report abuse

Just because there was no 15 year old girl doesn't mean that no crime occurred. Attempt and solicitation are crimes. Though I would certainly argue your point.

Posted by: nsu1203 | November 26, 2010 11:47 AM | Report abuse

Did the woman say she was 15 or that she had a kid who was 15? Women will do all sorts of things to get money for gifts at Christmas.

Posted by: blasmaic | November 26, 2010 3:26 PM | Report abuse

What?? $15,000 bail. Did the judge not think he is a flight risk? If he can afford to buy child sex slaves, and is a hill staffer, he has plenty of money to take off. He will end up in Thailand buying and raping 12 year-olds.

What a sad excuse for a man!

Posted by: wobbleman47 | November 28, 2010 5:27 AM | Report abuse

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