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Ex-Blue Angels Photographer Pleads Guilty to Child Porn Charge

Pilots of the U.S. Navy’s Blue Angels fly in a delta formation during a training flight over the beaches of Pensacola, Fla., on Oct. 23, 2013. (DoD photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Terrence Siren, U.S. Navy)
NORFOLK – A former photographer for the Blue Angels used a Navy camera to film a young girl taking a shower, according to court documents.
Ryan Courtade, 34, of Chesapeake pleaded guilty Tuesday to one count
of possession of child pornography. He faces up to 10 years in prison
when sentenced Nov. 13 in U.S. District Court.
In exchange for the plea, prosecutors agreed to drop a more serious charge of production of child pornography.
According to court documents, Courtade was caught Aug. 5, 2014, kneeling next to the bed of a 14-year-old girl as she slept.
When Chesapeake police responded to a 911 call, an officer found
Courtade inside his car breaking a CD, documents said. A search of
Courtade’s computer revealed a 24-minute video of the girl showering.
The video showed Courtade turning on a GoPro camera and placing it on a counter, pointed toward the shower.
Courtade told police the camera belonged to the Navy.
Courtade was arrested in August 2014 and charged in state court, but those charges were dropped in March.
At the time of his arrest, Courtade was a chief petty officer
assigned to the aircraft carrier Gerald Ford. Before that, he was
assigned to Expeditionary Combat Camera in Norfolk.
Courtade spent most of his career taking pictures for the Navy, but
he also earned Naval Aircrew and Enlisted Aviation Warfare Specialist
Wings, according to a biography posted on a Navy website.
He served as the aerial photographer for the Blue Angels from late 2003 until mid-2007.

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