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BAMBERG, Germany — An Illesheim, Germany-based soldier was sentenced to 10 months’ confinement Wednesday for possession of child pornography, and will now have to register as a child sex offender for the rest of his life.

Pvt. Titus A. Neubauer, an AH-64 Apache mechanic with 7th Battalion, 159th Aviation Regiment, was also stripped of military pay and allowances and given a bad-conduct discharge.

On Aug. 29, Neubauer testified, he entered his suite-mate’s room illegally with the intention of using his computer to download pornography. He said his original intent was to find adult pornography, but when he stumbled upon child porn he did not look away and in fact modified his search to specifically look for what military judge Col. Michael J. Nelson termed “minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct.”

Upon realizing that what he was viewing could place him and his suite-mate in jeopardy, Neubauer attempted to remove the material. The computer shut down and he could not regain access, so he left a note for the suite-mate saying, “Please come see me ASAP.”

All told, 39 images and six video clips were found by Army criminal investigators when the computer was seized after Neubauer’s suite-mate reported him the next day.

Illesheim was Neubauer’s first duty assignment in the Army, and he had already received nonjudicial punishment twice. His tenure also included a six-month profile for what was originally thought to be a heart condition which barred him from deployment, a misdiagnosed case of bipolar disorder and frequent problems with weight gain.

Defense counsel tried to make a case for rehabilitation, and included as a character witness Neubauer’s mother, Pamela Neubauer. Testifying via phone, she said she thought her oldest son “has consciously taken responsibility and accountability for his actions and realizes that there has to be a punishment for [them].”

Neubauer said in his own defense that he was sorry for what he had done, and acknowleged his willingness to take reponsibility. “I’ve had a lot of time to think on my actions … [it has] allowed me to grow up,” he said.

According to a pre-trial agreement, 21-year-old Neubauer had pleaded guilty in the hopes of receiving a lighter sentence.

The crimes carried a maximum of 10½ years incarceration, and, had Neubauer carried any rank higher than private, he would have lost that as well.

The court-martial was held in Bamberg because of the availability of a military judge and because Illesheim does not have a courtroom.

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