A father from Morinville, Alta., has avoided jail time after pleading guilty to a charge stemming from the drowning of his two-year-old daughter in July 2015.
He had been charged under the Criminal Code with failing to provide the necessaries of life but on Wednesday instead pleaded guilty under a provincial statute to causing a child to be in need of intervention services.
He will serve 18 months probation under a suspended sentence.
In an agreed statement of facts, court heard that the family had been at the centre of previous complaints made to RCMP and Child and Family Services.
The complaints were that the couple's children, who were all under 10 years of age, roamed the neighbourhood without adult supervision.
CTV News says it learned that on the day the girl died, she was being watched by an older sibling while the mother was at home with the couple's one-year-old child and the father was at work.
A 911 call was made 45 minutes after the child went missing, and the girl was later found unresponsive in a storm retention pond.
"You have obviously suffered greatly," the judge told the parents Wednesday. "Despite that, sanction is required."
The father was overcome with emotion, and chose to not speak before sentencing.
There is a publication ban on the names of the parents in the case.