Penticton man gets 90 days for child porn

Judge says collector lucky he missed the cut-off for tougher mandatory minimum sentence for the offence

A man handed a 90-day jail term this week for possessing child pornography should consider himself lucky, said the judge who sentenced him.

Tyson Jay Guglich, 26, pleaded guilty in provincial court in Penticton to having the offensive material on his computer between April 2011 and May 2012.

During that period, the mandatory minimum jail sentence for the offence was 14 days, which was bumped up to 90 days in August 2012.

Judge Greg Koturbash said he considered the length of time over which Guglich admitted “cultivating videos and images from this seedy culture” of child pornography to be an aggravating factor that warranted a sentence greater than the mandatory minimum.

“Consider yourself lucky today,” the judge said, adding 90 days would have been merely the starting point in his deliberations had the offences occurred just a few months later.

Koturbash acknowledged as mitigating factors, however, that Guglich pleaded guilty, had no prior criminal record and sought psychological counselling after his arrest.

As well, most of the images and videos found on his computer did not depict child abuse, but rather “scantily clad” girls ranging from 12 to 16 years of age, the judge said.

Besides the 90-day jail sentence that Guglich will serve on weekends, he will also be subject to two years’ probation, conditions of which include not accessing the Internet, not deliberately being in the presence of anyone under the age of 16 except with permission, and not possessing pornography of any kind.

Crown counsellor Catherine Crockett said Guglich was caught following an investigation by the RCMP’s Integrated Child Exploitation unit based in the Lower Mainland, which tracked him through a peer-to-peer file sharing network.

Crockett asked for a 90-day jail sentence and three years’ probation.

Defence counsel Wade Jenson argued his client’s relatively young age and remorse warranted a maximum of 30 days in jail.

Jensen described Guglich as an “individual that lacks a certain amount of confidence,” who “was spending way too much time in front of a computer by himself.”

Speaking in his own defence, Guglich told the judge his legal woes are “obviously very embarrassing and humiliating,” but that he’s grateful for the intervention “because I’ve been able to take the necessary steps to straighten out my problems.”

“I’m not a dangerous person to the public,” said Guglich.

“I am sincerely sorry.”