Local News

Firefighter faces online sex charges in Florida

Posted October 20, 2008

— A Seymour Johnson Air Force Base firefighter was arrested in Florida Sunday on charges he used the Internet to arrange a sexual encounter with a minor, authorities said.

Mark Floyd Farwell, 38, of 110 Larchmont Circle in Goldsboro, was charged with five counts of prohibited use of computer services and one count of traveling to meet a minor.

Farwell, a captain in the fire department at Seymour Johnson, corresponded online for 10 months with undercover deputies in the Lake County Sheriff's Office, believing the deputies were a woman with a 7-year-old daughter, authorities said. He explicitly described how he wanted to meet them for sex, authorities said.

A meeting was arranged over the weekend while Farwell was visiting relatives in Florida, and he was arrested at the meeting location, authorities said.


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  • TruthBKnown Banned Again02 Oct 20, 2008

    "That seals his involvement and guilt in this charge right there"

    No, it seals his being charged. The jury determines his guilt. I don't care what the crime is, and I don't care who the suspect is. In crimes like this, it should remain sealed until he is convicted. They can hold him in jail until the trial without bail if they like, so no more harm can be done. But he deserves the right to clear his name, just like anyone else.

    The problem with such emotionally-charged crimes like this is that innocent people that were wrongfully charged have a difficult time clearing their name.

    It can wait until after the conviction. News organizations are so eager to be the first to report on something like this that they don't care if they're harming an innocent man (and family) in the process.

    I agree that it looks bad and he's probably guilty. But because of all this, you and I would not be suitable jurors. We've already determined that he's guilty without knowing the evidence.

  • PTA mom Oct 20, 2008

    TruthBKnown- you could be right about the neighbor hacking into his computer except for the fact that this guy (owner of the computer) is the one who showed up in Florida at the designated time and place. That seals his involvement and guilt in this charge right there so like I said- get the name out now in case this has happened before AND to make sure it doesn't happen again.

  • TruthBKnown Banned Again02 Oct 20, 2008

    PTA mom, if you're right, and the charges are true, then no harm is done. The harm that might be done is if this guy is completely innocent and all this came about due to a misunderstanding. His name is ruined. What if a neighbor hacked into his unsecured internet connection and did this soliciting?

    I don't believe that is the case, but there are a dozen what ifs. I'm just saying, until someone is convicted, what's the purpose in dragging their possibly good name through the mud like this? And this is mud that is not easily washed away. There are people that will always believe he is guilty just because he was charged and looks a certain way.

  • PTA mom Oct 20, 2008

    His name is going to be made public at some point and if he is that stupid to look for children on the internet I think we all need to know about it now to protect innocent children everywhere. I am truly sorry for the hurt this has caused his family but what if this isn't the first time this happened? Getting his name out there may bring up other related cases. I am NOT saying this is the situation here but what if? He forfeited his right to privacy when he took that first dark step towards finding children for sex.

  • TruthBKnown Banned Again02 Oct 20, 2008

    What's so wrong with waiting for a conviction before plastering his name and picture all over the newspapers? If it's that open-and-shut, then just wait.

  • jlh4jdj Oct 20, 2008

    Seeminglyopposed--So hurting more inocent people is ok? I have no problem with them trowing the book at him for this. You would say different if this was the father of your children and you were trying to protect your children. If you say you wouldn't then you must explain. This isn't TV people need to remember that the scares in real life actually last more than an hour.

  • Glass Half Full Oct 20, 2008

    To his family, my condolences. To him, my wish that he's punished as harshly as if he had been able to indulge his fantasies. To law enforcement, my thanks for their continued efforts to rid society of this lowest form of life.

  • renesbmw Oct 20, 2008

    what a slug! throw the book at him!

  • EMTGuy Oct 20, 2008

    Does anyone HONESTLY think that they could Possibly, even remotely hook up with CHILDREN over the internet? With as much publicity such as the "To Catch a Predator" series. The crackdown on child porn, anyone who THINKS they can do this and get away with it, NEEDS to have their picture splashed across the news media. I understand the need/want to protect his family, but he needed to THINK about that before even ATTEMPTING to commit this crime, and what about protecting our children from the likes of him? If he could attempt to do this on-line then it's entirely possible he could try it another way.....

  • aquamarine46 Oct 20, 2008

    He is sick...............and just plain disgusting!! Aquamarine