CEDAR FALLS – A former University of Northern Iowa professor has died while serving prison time for child molestation charges in Arkansas.

John Clifford Longnecker died Tuesday, according to the Arkansas Department of Corrections. He was 80 and was suffering from lung cancer.

Longnecker had been an assistant math and computer professor at UNI and served a stint as the chairman of the Faculty Senate. He retired in 2000 after 33 years at the university and later moved to Bella Vista, Ark.

Court records indicate Longnecker was accused of abusing several children while living in Cedar Falls, but he was never charged.

Then in 2016, Longnecker was arrested for fondling three children between ages 5 and 8 in Bella Vista, and police found evidence he had filmed himself abusing the children.

After the arrest, family members told Arkansas police about the Cedar Falls allegations, and Cedar Falls police launched their own investigation, according to Courier archives. He was never charged.

He pleaded guilty to charges of rape, sexual assault and child porn charges in Arkansas, and he was sentenced to 95 years in prison.

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