Torched by a “mysterious” fire after the perp was sentenced to three and a half years in prison. For raping a young girl.

The police suspect arson. But they’re not working too hard to solve it:

A fire investigator said the heat was too intense to identify an ignition point.

“That’s a shame,” said the father, who cannot be identified for legal reasons.

Heh.

More:

Even the victim, whom Ellis had threatened to kill if she told anyone about the assault, and who still lives nearby, came out to watch the timber cottage burn.

“You couldn’t wipe the smile off her face,” her father said yesterday.

There’s no such thing as a rape story that “ends well.” Let’s just say this one ended better than it could have.

Speaking of child predators, has the backlash to the backlash begun? Barnett, citing the first Democrat smear ad, thinks it has. And if he’s wrong, if it hasn’t yet, just wait a day or two. Dick Morris claimed last night on Hannity & Colmes that at least one person in the Democratic leadership has known about Foley for months — and said nothing. Greg Tinti has video. The Prowler, meanwhile, quotes an unnamed Democratic staffer as saying this has been in the works since spring:

“We’ve been hearing about some kind of oppo effort for close to six months, though there weren’t names attached,” says a House Democrat leadership aide. “You socialize with political types off the Hill and you’d hear rumblings that we were building up some pretty explosive stuff for the fall, and you got the sense that CREW was a big part of it.”

I see from Blogometer that Josh “I question the timing” Marshall is having trouble grasping the significance of the timing here. What difference would it make, wonders JMM, if it turned out Democrats sat on this info while a potential child molester went about his business in the halls of Congress?

I don’t want to draw rolled eyes. But think about it.

One former page says he was warned by another page about Foley all the way back in 1995. Meanwhile, the feds wonder: is Foley a criminal, or just a perv?

Update: Liebs? Up a sawbuck in Rasmussen’s latest. There’ll be things to be happy about on election night, I promise.

Update: Plamegate pusher David Corn claims to have obtained a list of closeted gay GOP congressional aides which, he suggests, is being circulated by House Republicans who suspect the aides of having “helped” Foley. He concludes, naturally enough, with a veiled threat:

[A]nytime a gay Republican is outed by events, a dicey issue is raised: what about those GOPers who are gay and who serve a party that is anti-gay? Are they hypocrites, opportunists, or just confused individuals? Is it possible to support a party because you adhere to most of its tenets–even if that party refuses to recognize you as a full citizen? The men on The List might want to think hard about these questions–as they probably already have–for if I have a copy of The List, there’s a good chance it will be appearing soon on a website near everyone.

Update: To be clear: Corn said the list had been drawn up by “gay politicos” without specifying their party, but he also said that House Republicans were angry at the gay staffers. I took that as a suggestion that Republicans were helping to circulate the list in hopes of having these people purged. Maybe — hopefully — I misread.