Mathew Palmer, a former state Commerce Department executive who abruptly resigned in August, has been charged in federal court with distributing child pornography.
Using a private messaging app called Wickr, Palmer on Aug. 11 allegedly shared a 51-second clip of a man raping a young girl, according to charging documents filed last week. Palmer left his position as chief operating officer of the Maryland Department of Commerce the next day.
Before transferring June 3 to the commerce position at a salary of $133,000, Palmer worked as Republican Gov. Larry Hogan’s deputy legislative officer.
“It’s obviously a very serious case,” Palmer’s attorney, David Irwin of Baltimore, said. “It’s at the very early stages, but we hope to come to a resolution with the government.”
A Commerce Department spokeswoman declined to comment, other than confirming when Palmer worked there.
“As per department policy, we do not comment further on personnel matters,” Karen Glenn Hood said.