North Okanagan gymnastics coach awaits move to provincial court

Chad Andrew McDowell's file will move to the judicial case manager's office Dec. 5

  • Nov. 29, 2018 12:00 a.m.

The file for a North Okanagan gymnastics coach facing a charge of possession of obscene material for the purpose of circulation will move to fix a date.

Chad Andrew McDowell wasn’t in Vernon Law Courts Thursday, Nov. 29 when his file was before the registry. A court clerk said that his file will be before the judicial case manager Dec. 5 for the purpose of fixing a date.

At a previous hearing that was scheduled to be the start of a Supreme Court trial, defence lawyer Julian van der Walle said that he and Crown prosecutor Juan O’Quinn had come together with a joint submission and sought to re-elect down to provincial court.

“This matter came right down to the 11th hour, my lord. As of last night, I was absolutely sure it was going to go to trial,” van der Walle told a Supreme Court Justice Nov. 19. “However, as of this morning, my friend and I have come together with a very creative resolution involving my client entering a plea of guilty to a different offence that does not attract a mandatory minimum.”

Related: Resolution found for North Okanagan gymnastics coach facing child pornography charges

Courts documents show that McDowell is facing one count of making or publishing obscene matter. The trial was slated to be for one count each of possession of child pornography, accessing child pornography and importing or distributing child pornography.

Related: Gymnastics coach facing child pornography charges

McDowell, born in 1975, is listed as the Owner of Kalamalka Acro & Tumbling on social media. His profile states that he is currently teaching in Lumby and is looking to expand into other small towns.

However, a former Village of Lumby chief administrative officer told The Morning Star in June 2017 that the profile hasn’t been updated and that the arrangement was cancelled in May 2016 due to dwindling registration.

McDowell also coached at a gymnastics club in Vernon for 17 weeks in late 2012 and early 2013 and was subsequently released from his duties by the club, which states its last contact with the coach was in December 2012.

None of the charges against McDowell have been proven in court.


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