Kamloops man sentenced to six months in jail in child luring case - InfoNews

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Kamloops man sentenced to six months in jail in child luring case

March 12, 2019 - 2:38 PM

KAMLOOPS — A Kamloops man who pleaded guilty to child luring charges was sentenced to six months in jail today.

Last September, Justin McGowan, a 36-year-old father of five paid a 13-year-old girl with cash and pizza in exchange for nude photos. Kamloops provincial Judge Roy Dickey sentenced McGowan today, March 12, to six months behind bars followed by a two-year probation period for the charges of arranging a sexual offence against a child and possession of child pornography.

Crown prosecutors had requested 12 to 18 months of incarceration for McGowan.

On Sept. 12, 2018, McGowan communicated with a 13-year-old girl by internet through an app called Whisper, which provides its users with anonymity, said Dickey in his decision.

The victim's identity cannot be revealed due to a publication ban.

"Mr. McGowan responded to a post by the victim on Whisper," Dickey said. "Mr. McGowan asked for nude photos from the victim, she refused."

Dickey says McGowan then offered to and later paid the victim for providing naked pictures of herself.

"He paid her by purchasing her pizza and having them delivered to her residence," Dickey said.

The victim sent the photos and McGowan told her she could come to his residence.

"The photos of the victim were illegal for her age," Dickey said. "The victim was very young at the time of the offence."

Court heard at the time of the offence McGowan was going through a rough patch and was suffering emotionally after his family fell apart.

"[McGowan] became a binge drinker, at the time of the offence and he says he was on a five-day bender using both alcohol and cocaine," Dickey said, adding that the accused also says he suffered from blackouts.

Since the offence, Dickey says McGowan has been sober and has been attending alcoholics and narcotics anonymous as well as receiving mental health support.

Dickey says McGowan supports five children including his own and stepchildren. He is also self-employed.

Following his six months in jail, McGowan will be placed on probation for two years where he must comply with various conditions including having no contact with the victim, not go to any public park, public swimming area, or any centre where persons under the age of 18 are present or are expected to be present. These include daycare centres, school grounds and playgrounds.

The only time McGowan will be allowed in these prohibited areas is with written permission from his probation officer which he must carry with him. He must also not engage in any activities, volunteer or gain employment that could bring him in contact with people under the age of 18 without written permission from his probation officer.

Dickey said the minimum sentence of six months of incarceration was a fit sentence for McGowan. The judge looked at mitigating factors including McGowan's early guilty plea and the fact he never met the victim in person.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Karen Edwards or call (250) 819-3723 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2019
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