Soldier gets 27 months for child porn, sex charges

News
A wooden gavel and block. (Stars and Stripes)
A wooden gavel and block. (Stars and Stripes)

Soldier gets 27 months for child porn, sex charges

by: Rob Shikina | .
The Honolulu Star-Advertiser | .
published: August 02, 2016

An Army medic charged with murder in connection with the stabbing death of his wife was sentenced Saturday in military court to 27 months in federal prison and a dishonorable discharge for possession of child pornography and soliciting others to engage in sex for money.

Sgt. Michael Walker, who was assigned to Tripler Army Medical Center, pleaded guilty Saturday to three counts of solicitation and not guilty to one count of possession of child pornography before a military judge at Wheeler Army Airfield’s courtroom.

Col. Mark Bridges, of 4th Judicial Circuit at Schofield Barracks, sentenced Walker in the court-martial and ordered his rank reduced to private. He found Walker guilty of possession of 89 images and 14 videos of child pornography on his laptop.

Walker, 36, dressed in the Army service uniform of a white shirt and blue pants, had no visible reaction when the judge announced his sentence.

He has been held at the Federal Detention Center in Honolulu since his arrest in November in connection with the murder investigation. The child pornography and solicitation charges surfaced during that investigation.

Walker, who has been in the military for 12 years, was charged with solicitation instead of prostitution because the Uniform Code of Military Justice, under which Walker was found guilty, defines prostitution as between a man and a woman.

In his court-martial, Walker admitted to placing two ads in September 2014, seeking people to have sex with in exchange for money. He said in the ads that he was looking for “generous men to spend time with” or “looking to have some fun.”

In court, he said, “My purpose was to find people to have sex with and at the same time to give me money.”

Walker said he met with three men that fall and had sex with them for money on multiple occasions. He said one man paid him $400 for an encounter.

He faced 12 months in prison for each of the four counts for which he was charged.

Prosecutors said 91 images and 17 videos of child pornography were found on Walker’s laptop, and that the Army medic attempted to hide the pictures and videos in files named “ArmyStudyguide” and “recycling bin.”

A digital forensic investigator testified that the computer history showed someone had accessed the videos and one image in November 2013, January 2014 and May 2014.

Military defense attorneys argued the files were placed onto Walker’s computer during a massive transfer of files from an older laptop and that prosecutors had failed to prove that Walker was the one who accessed the files.

Defense counsel Capt. Natanyah Ganz argued for leniency because Walker has an addiction to sex and he is seeking treatment. She said he served the country honorably by deploying to Iraq twice and one time to Afghanistan, where he received an award for tending to wounded Afghan soldiers while under fire.

His father, Stephen Walker, of Utah, said by phone that Michael Walker is the oldest of four children. “The family wants to help him and wants to see him recover from this,” he said.

Michael Walker previously pleaded not guilty to a murder charge in civilian court in the killing of his wife, Catherine Walker, 38, who was found stabbed to death in November 2014 in the couple’s Aliamanu Military Reservation home.

A federal grand jury indicted Walker in November on charges of aiding and abetting and conspiring to commit first-degree murder in connection with the fatal stabbing.

In December, Ailsa Jackson, who was having an affair with Sgt. Walker, said in a Honolulu federal courtroom as part of a plea agreement that she stabbed Catherine Walker. Prosecutors said Jackson stabbed Walker multiple times with a kitchen knife as she slept.

Jackson and Sgt. Walker met through an online dating site and discussed carrying out the killing while he was working, prosecutors said.

Walker’s criminal trial is scheduled for January.

©2016 The Honolulu Star-Advertiser
Visit The Honolulu Star-Advertiser at www.staradvertiser.com
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

Tags: News
Related Content: No related content is available