To all of those who would assert that we veterans believe that all other veterans are good and that we would not say anything bad about others veterans, I present to you one James P. Finn.
A 42-year-old man faced child pornography charges Thursday after police say they caught him in the act of downloading child pornography off the Internet during a search of his home.As it happens, Finn used to be an active duty USAF NCO (before that, he had been a Marine Reservist). In the late eighties, I worked in the same USAF office (in then West Berlin) with Finn along with several others. He was introduced to me and was mostly referred to as “JP,” which made sense in a place in which there were a lot of American men and, therefore, several men who had been given the name of “James.”
A flier circulated in the neighborhood where James P. Finn lived identifying him as a "pedophile activist" that included his name and photograph led police to investigate Finn, Wayne County Sheriff Warren Evans said.
During a search of Finn's home Tuesday, police said they found about 30 digital movies and nearly 600 photos showing children in sexual situations.
JP had an air about him which most of us with working “gaydar” recognized. The fact that there have been many homosexuals in the military isn’t new to those of us who have been a part of it. The Clinton policy of “don’t-ask-don’t-tell” was a de facto among regular military members long before the forty-second president made it de jure.
I had known about JP’s downfall of twenty years ago via RUMINT. When JP was due to rotate out of Berlin, a flag involving his security clearance had popped up. The word was that he had been accused of molesting an underage male cousin in the years before his military service. The accusation of molestation became known to military authorities via the cousin’s psychiatrist.
However, when JP took his plane from Berlin to Atlanta via Frankfurt, he wasn’t under arms(!) So when he landed in Atlanta that was the last that the military had heard of him until 1995.
Taking the advice of a friend, Finn said, he fled the [Atlanta] area to escape going to trial. After being on the run for six years, he said, the Air Force tracked him down in 1995 in New York.JP served seven months in a military prison, likely for desertion.
Facing the possibility of 20 years in prison, Finn said, the case against him was ultimately dropped after the boy whom he had the relationship with refused to testify against him.
Here’s the most hair-raising quote from the article:
"I am convinced that inter-generational love is not wrong," he wrote. "I must help spread the message. I realize it would be easier to sink into obscurity and perhaps find a beautiful, satisfying relationship with a boy.This is what people who are consumed by evil do. Instead of turning away from what they know is wrong, they convince themselves that their desire is the opposite of wrong. JP may have been born with the desires he has, but I’m not buying any of the crap which would absolve him of his guilt—that he was unable to control himself.
Not only did JP not control himself, he waded into his perversion, nearly drowning himself in it and became its representative. He has a huge online footprint as a “pedophile activist.” (One of my fellow Cold Warriors advised us to Google his name, but I’m just not up to that.)
Some who were close friends with JP way back when are beating themselves up about how they could have missed this about him. But as my friend Marty points out, “the most effective predators are very good at compartmentalizing their different lives.”
James P. Finn is a blot on the reputations of both the USMC and the USAF and I hope that he is put somewhere far, far away from children.
Can he be redeemed in the eyes of God? Of course. However, that does not change the fact that there are earthly penalties which he will have to pay. It looks as though he will but I’m sorry that it took so long and I’m betting that there are many people—many parents and children—who are sorrier than I am.
UPDATE: Another pervert is set to receive earthly justice.