FREDERICK, MD – A summer production of “Annie” is getting a lot of fanfare – not because of the talent, but because of the play’s director. Turns out he’s a convicted sex offender.
The director, Samuel Huffer, spent 21 months in federal prison for possessing child pornography. He had worked as a drama teacher in Walkersville, but when officials raided his home in 2001, State’s Attorney Charlie Smith says they found pornographic tapes of boys.
“A leopard doesn’t change their spots,” Smith said. “I would think that there should be a moral obligation on these types of programs to notify parents.”
The play is put on by the Frederick Town Players. The community organization didn’t notify parent’s until three weeks into rehearsals.
“I don’t think Sam will harm a child. He certainly was convicted of a serious crime, he served prison time, and fulfilled his probation,” said Rick Weldon, who plays Daddy Warbucks.
There are about 50 people in the cast, and half of them are children. Weldon says Huffer is an exceptional director and the children are not in danger.
He added, “I would never put my personal reputation on the line to be involved in a production that I thought children were going to be at risk. I just wouldn’t have done it.”
Huffer has completed his three years of supervised probation. The State’s Attorney says he is not breaking the law by directing plays.