Al Kirkwood was jailed last year after pleading guilty to child pornography charges. KTW photo

Kirkwood can see grandkids at Christmas, judge rules

Kirkwood made a brief appearance in Kamloops provincial court on Tuesday

Tim Petruk / Kamloops This Week

A former North Thompson fire chief and newspaper publisher who was jailed last year after pleading guilty to child pornography charges will be allowed to spend Christmas with his grandchildren, a judge has ruled.

Al Kirkwood made a brief appearance in Kamloops provincial court on Tuesday, asking a judge to amend an order put in place at the time of his sentencing in January 2018 — one barring him from being in a position of authority over children for a period of 10 years.

On Oct. 4, 2016, police executed search warrants at Kirkwood’s Barriere home, as well as his two offices — one at the town’s firehall and the other at the North-Thompson Star Journal newspaper, where he served as publisher.

He resigned from both posts a short time later.

Described as a former “pillar of the community” in Barriere, Kirkwood served for 23 years as the town’s fire chief.

On his computers, police found still images and videos showing children posing sexually and others shown engaged in oral sex. One video described in court depicted a six-year-old girl performing oral sex on a grown man.

Kirkwood pleaded guilty and was later sentenced to seven months in prison, followed by an 18-month probation term with orders barring him from visiting parks, playgrounds and pools. The order also prohibited him from owning a smartphone or accessing the internet without his wife’s supervision.

Kirkwood was also placed on an optional 10-year order barring him from volunteering or working in any role that puts him in a position of authority over children. In addition, he was required to register as a sex offender and submit a sample of his DNA to a national criminal database.

In court on Tuesday, Kirkwood asked Judge Marianne Armstrong to change the option order to allow him to spend time with his young grandchildren over Christmas.

The judge obliged, but only if Kirkwood’s wife or other relatives were supervising him.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID-19 brings burning ban to Clearwater and area

The reason for the ban is to help reduce excess air pollution in populated air-sheds

B.C. COVID-19 contact restrictions working, Dr. Bonnie Henry says

’Not out of the woods yet’ as next two weeks are critical

Kamloops-Thompson teachers to connect with parents to reveal plans for remote teaching

School district also asking parents to ensure children are practicing social distancing

Interior Health issues alert following confirmed COVID-19 case on WestJet flight

The public exposure alert comes following the March 21 WestJet flight from Calgary to Kamloops

Clearwater COVID-19 precautions update

Local groups and facilities taking measures to keep the public safe

B.C. is seeing the highest rate of COVID-19 recovery in Canada, and there’s a few reasons why

British Columbia was one of the first to see rise in COVID-19 cases, and has also switched up testing

Sewers stitch masks to free up supplies for front-line health-care workers

“We have little old ladies sewing up a storm,” said Joan Davis

Experts weigh in on best handling of groceries during COVID-19 pandemic

Study suggests the virus can live for up to 24 hours on cardboard and up to three days on plastic

COVID-19 world update: Enforceable quarantine in NYC?; France orders 1 billion masks

Spain warns EU’s future at stake; New York governor calls Trump’s idea ‘federal declaration of war

‘Community is amazing’: Williams Lake woman organizes drive-by birthdays

With self-isolation the norm due to COVID-19 children are missing out

Earth Hour 2020 kicks off online Saturday night

Action moves online due to COVID-19

B.C. COVID-19 cases rise 92 to 884, one more death, 81 in care

Outbreak action underway in 12 long-term care homes

B.C. veterinarians want to smooth the fur of COVID-19-worried pet owners

Vets expect to continue giving your fur buddies the help they need while social distancing

B.C. VIEWS: Small businesses need our help

Just as integral in neighbourhoods in Vancouver and Surrey as they are in Prince George or Kelowna

Most Read