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"HIV positive swinger gets 8 years"

on Thursday, 20 January 2011. Posted in Media Updates

News24

An HIV positive US Air Force sergeant who engaged in spouse-swapping swingers parties was sentenced on Wednesday to eight years in military prison for failing to tell those partners about his condition.

Sergeant David Gutierrez, 43, also will be dishonourably discharged after serving his prison term, which strips him of benefits he'll need to pay for medication when released.

Gutierrez, found guilty of a slew of charges earlier on Wednesday, begged the presiding judge at the court-martial, Lieutenant Colonel William Muldoon, for mercy, saying he would rather spend additional time behind bars than lose his medical benefits.

Sobbing into a tissue, Gutierrez apologised to his family, his victims and the Air Force.

"I hope they understand I never intended to hurt them," Gutierrez said of his victims, addressing the court before being sentenced. "I thank God every day that no one has contracted HIV" because of contact with him.

"All one has to do is Google my name and my life is before them," he said. "That, I know, is my fault."

Russian Roulette

He was convicted of seven counts each of aggravated assault and adultery, and one count each of committing an indecent act and disobeying a superior officer's order. Gutierrez could have been sentenced to more than 50 years in prison.

Military prosecutors asked that he receive no less than 18 years and lose his medical benefits, which Gutierrez said would mean a death sentence for him.

Gutierrez "repeatedly played Russian Roulette with the lives of the people of this community", prosecutor Captain Sam Kidd said.

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