Ryan Loskarn, a former Senate staffer who was facing child pornography charges, was found dead Thursday afternoon, law enforcement officials in Maryland announced on Friday.
Loskarn is believed to have committed suicide.
“At approximately 12pm yesterday, Carroll County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to a private residence in the 6400 block of Kenmar Lane for a report of an unconscious male, believed to be deceased,” the Carroll County, Md. sheriff’s office said in a statement on Friday. “Family members reported finding 35 year old Jesse Ryan Loskarn unresponsive in his basement where he’d been residing with family since this past December. The preliminary investigation indicates that Loskarn may have taken his own life, and his body has since been transported to the State Medical Examiner’s Office for Autopsy. The investigation continues…”
Loskarn, the former chief of staff to Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN), was arrested in December on federal charges of possession and distribution of child pornography. While he awaited trial, Loskarn had been confined to his parents’ home in Maryland. Court documents filed after his arrest indicated that prosecutors and Loskarn’s lawyers “intend to explore the possibility of a pre-indictment disposition.”
Loskarn spent more than a decade in politics. He served as Alexander’s chief of staff from 2011 until his arrest, after which Alexander announced that he had removed Loskarn from his payroll and appointed a new chief of staff.
“For everyone involved, this is a sad and tragic story from beginning to end,” Alexander said Friday in a statement provided to TPM.
Loskarn’s parents, Chuck and Gay Loskarn, also released a statement Friday, according to The Huffington Post.
“We loved our son very much, and we’re devastated by his death,” the statement said. “Please respect our privacy at this difficult time and let us grieve in peace. Pray for him, his family and friends.”
Additional reporting by Sahil Kapur.
This post has been updated.