Vernon man ‘photoshopped’ himself into child porn photos

Ex-Judo coach still awaits sentencing

The sentencing for an ex-Vernon Judo coach who pleaded guilty to charges of distributing child pornography will have to wait after Judge Dennis Morgan told the court Monday he’d give his reasoning in writing at a later date.

Bryan McLachlan, 49, sat in the Vernon courtroom, visibly uneasy, as Crown counsel Margaret Cissell described several pornographic photographs in great detail, which were sent from numerous usernames linked to the accused.

Seven photographs containing children and young adults were uploaded from McLachlan’s computer in the summer of 2017, according to a B.C. Integrated Child Exploitation Unit report that was given to RCMP. One of which was doctored, or “photoshopped” to add himself into the image.

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Despite the fact the photos are not real representations of a sexual act, Cissell said, the images are still damaging to the victims in the photograph.

“Those images he created now live and exist and will continue to do so as there is no real way to retrieve them,” she said.

Defence lawyer Nicholas Jacob said, however, that although they are humiliating, the photograph in question is difficult to believe as it was “crudely” made.

Jacob is arguing for a 90-day sentencing to be served intermittently over weekends so McLachlan can continue his employment and provide for his wife and three children.

He said the court should consider this sentence acceptable as a psychiatric report noted there is low risk his client would re-offend. Jacob also brought forward several character references speaking highly of McLachlan’s hard work ethic, parenting skills and demeanour.

Jacob said McLachlan has no prior convictions and was suffering from addictions issues at the time. He said his client was drinking “to blackout” and does not recall much of what happened during the time the offences occurred. The drinking started in 2011 after McLachlan and his wife separated and although he and the marriage recovered, he started drinking again when his child fell ill in 2017.

The Crown is seeking 12 to 18 months of jail time and a three-year probation period. Conditions of probation would see McLachlan banned from public spaces, such as parks, pools and other places where it is likely he would encounter individuals under the age of 16. His use of the internet, computers and cellphones would also be monitored by a parole officer and must include records of browsing histories.

Upon court adjournment, McLachlan, clad in a blue dress shirt, was seen hugging his wife who was there to support him.

READ MORE: More child pornography charges laid against Vernon Judo Club coach

READ MORE: Vernon Judo Club sends four-pack to Richmond Oval


@caitleerach
Caitlin.clow@vernonmorningstar.com

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