A former high-ranking leader with the B.C. Dragoons has been conditionally sentenced to house arrest and probation for possession of child pornography.
At B.C. provincial court in Kelowna, Sean David Parker was handed his sentence on Thursday after pleading guilty to the charge last year.
Both Crown counsel and defence jointly submitted a conditional sentence order of 18 months and three years of probation.
Court heard that child porn images had been uploaded to two online accounts from his Kelowna home. Court also heard that police found images on a hard drive, as well as a cellphone.
Parker is a former member of the Dragoons, a reserve unit that’s part of the Department of National Defence’s 39th Canadian Brigade Group. The Dragoons are based in Kelowna and Vernon.
Parker also served two missions as a reservist with Canada’s military in Afghanistan and was elevated to Regimental Sergeant Major of the Dragoons in 2012, becoming the highest ranking non-commission member of the unit.
“Obviously this is a disturbing situation,” DND Army spokesperson Lt. Col. Doug MacNair told Global News in November. “It’s not conduct we would expect from the member of the Canadian military particularly those that rise to a high rank.”
According to B.C. Prosecution Service, Parker was originally accused of three charges — accessing, importing and possession of child pornography — and was facing a three-day trial, but pled guilty to one count of possession.
On Thursday, court heard that Parker has post-traumatic stress disorder and that he would drink heavily — to the point of blacking out — to drown out traumatic memories from his military service.
Court also heard that Parker couldn’t remember searching for, accessing or uploading the images, and that he would be horrified the next day by his search history.
Parker addressed the court, saying he has stopped drinking and is taking responsibility for his actions, and promised to make amends.
The judge agreed to the joint submission and imposed an 18-month conditional sentence, along with three years of probation.
Parker will also be under a number of conditions, including six months of house arrest followed by six months under curfew.