A Gary, Ind. man will spend the rest of his life in federal prison for sexually molesting an infant on eight occasions during about a 14-month period in 2011 and 2012.
Christopher M. Bour, 40, pleaded guilty in January, without a plea agreement, to paying Natisha Hillard a total of $500 to have sex with a 4-month-old infant girl, an arrangement that lasted until the child was 18 months old, the Post-Tribune is reporting.
U.S. District Court Judge Rudy Lozano on Thursday rejected Bour’s request for the mandatory minimum of 30 years in prison, saying that his crime was too “horrific.” He sentenced Bour to a life sentence plus 55 years to be served consecutively.
“In all honesty, much of the evidence in here is very disgusting,” Lozano said during the sentencing hearing at federal court in Hammond.
Bour pleaded guilty to buying a child for sex, possessing child pornography and three counts of producing child pornography. Hillard, whom Bour met in 2011 through a dating service, also pleaded guilty in the case and is awaiting sentencing. She was prepared to testify Thursday at Bour’s sentencing but was not called, according to prosecutors.
Hillard has admitted to being in the room with Bour and the baby on all but the last meeting, when he paid her extra to be alone with the baby. He also took sexual images of the child’s older sister, who was about 3 years old at the time, and had child pornography images of other children that he did not produce, according to the government.
Lozano noted that Bour made several contradictory statements, including that he had cooperated with police from the beginning. However, he told police when they first searched his house that he only possessed child pornography but had never sexually touched a child. A week later, though, police discovered images on his computer showing him having sex with the infant, the judge said.
Lozano said Bour showed no remorse for his crime and bragged about having sex with babies in text conversations with an acquaintance. Bour did apologize during the hearing, although not to anyone specifically, and asked for mercy from Lozano. “Not a day goes by that I don’t think about the consequences of my action,” he said.
He told the judge that he developed an addiction to pornography about three years ago, and it caused him to lose control of his life, which Bour said had been good up until then. “I treated people like I wanted to be treated,” he said.
Bour claimed that his arrest and past year in jail have cured him of his addiction and that he would not return to child pornography. Bour’s attorney, Matthew Soliday, sought to have his client receive the mandatory minimum of 30 years in prison, arguing that Bour had never been arrested previously and had given information to police to help them identify Hillard, who could be seen in some of the videos.
“What he did was very bad, there’s no way around that,” Soliday told Lozano. “But life (in prison) means he has no opportunity at a second chance.”
Assistant U.S. Attorney Jill Koster denied that Bour had aided police, saying he didn’t know Hillard’s name or address and that police only found her after connecting her to a phone number found on Bour’s phone.
“There are some crimes so horrible that the defendant doesn’t deserve a second chance,” she said. No restitution was ordered, but Koster said the government has a tentative agreement with Bour for him to pay $8,300 to the victims, although the government could still ask for more.