- Our Town
Former Barriere fire chief will return to court in new year on child-porn charges
By Tim Petruk
Kamloops This Week
The former Barriere fire chief who resigned suddenly in October is due back in court in the new year following a brief appearance Thursday on child-porn charges.
Al Kirkwood, who also served as publisher of the North Thompson Star Journal and Clearwater Times newspapers, is facing one count each of importing or distributing child pornography and possession of child pornography.
The 62-year-old was arrested on Oct. 4, following RCMP searches of his home and offices. In all, four search warrants were executed at four locations.
Police have said the investigation into Kirkwood began in August after Mounties received information from U.S. law-enforcement officials. Mounties said there is no information to indicate any local children “were directly victimized by the accused.”
Kirkwood resigned as fire chief on Oct. 7 after more than two decades in the position. Black Press, which owns the Barriere and Clearwater newspapers he published, has said he is no longer a company employee.
He is due back in Kamloops provincial court on Jan. 19.