HALIFAX — A young man who pleaded guilty in a prominent child pornography case in Halifax has been given a conditional discharge and will be registered in the national DNA databank.
The man pleaded guilty in September to one count of making child pornography involving a teenage girl whose case generated national headlines before a statutory publication ban shielded her identity earlier this year.
The man, now 20, also cannot be identified because he was 17 when he committed the offence.
At his September hearing before youth court, the Crown read an agreed statement of facts into the court record that said he took a picture of a male youth having sex with the girl in the fall of 2011 while she was vomiting.
The Crown said the girl — who was 15 at the time — was unaware that the picture was being taken and did not give consent to it. She died last year at 17 after she was taken off life-support following a suicide attempt.
Before the sentence was delivered, her parents gave victim impact statements Thursday saying she was “ruined” after the sexually explicit picture was taken and distributed.
“That photo ruined her life. She was never the same again,” the girl’s mother told the court in an emotional address.
“She started to crumble and it was like a wrecking ball hit her.”
Her father said his once cheerful and chatty daughter sank into a depression.
“I had to watch my promising, intelligent, full-of-life child turn into an empty ghost, her dreams turn to anger, her laughter turn to anger and cries,” he said through tears.
“This is not the way this had to end.”