hunter canode

Hunter Canode, 24, was arrested Tuesday, June 16, by Pierre police on suspicion of failing to register as a sex offender. 

Hunter Canode, a registered sex offender released on parole from the state prison Jan. 16 after serving nine months on drug charges, was arrested Tuesday by Pierre police.

Capt. Bryan Walz said Canode was checked during a routine annual “sex offender verification operation,” with the U.S. Marshals Service that is required by law.

In an email, Walz said officers “learned Canode had failed to register his place of employment, and the termination of that employment, with local law enforcement as required under South Dakota statute. When Canode was located on June 16, it was learned he had consumed marijuana recently. Canode was placed under arrest for the violations and transported to the Hughes County Jail.”

Canode was found in Pierre and arrested without incident, according to Walz.

Canode may face long-term consequences beyond the new allegations if he is found to have violated his parole.

Arrested in June 2016, Canode initially was charged with several child pornography and drug counts that could have added up to 100 years or more in prison.

By 2019, Canode and his attorney, Brad Schreiber, reached a plea deal with state Assistant Attorney General Kelly Marnette.

Canode pleaded guilty to three counts: possession with intent to distribute more than a pound of pot, which had a maximum sentence of 15 years; ingestion of cocaine, with a top sentence of five years and possession of child pornography, with a top sentence of 10 years.

At Canode’s sentencing on April 26, 2019, Marnette asked state Circuit Judge John Brown (now retired) to sentence Canode to 20 years in prison with five years suspended, saying Canode had a large network trafficking large amounts of drugs.

Schreiber told Brown Canode was a new father and was “on the right path” and was a good candidate for probation. Canode told Judge Brown “I could be very successful at” probation.

Brown sentenced Canode to five years in prison with two years suspended. With credit for time served, it was four years, six months, with two years suspended. Based on state sentencing guidelines, Canode had to serve about 30% of his sentence, or about nine months before being paroled.

Brown granted Canode’s request for a suspended imposition of sentence on the child pornography charge, meaning if he fulfilled probation and other conditions, no felony conviction or sentence for the charge would remain on his record.

Any formal charges related to the alleged marijuana and sex offender registration violations reported by police would be made by the Hughes County State’s Attorney Roxanne Hammond.

Regarding the suspended imposition of the child pornography sentence last year, Tim Bormann, chief of staff for Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg, told the Capital Journal, “We are reviewing the specific terms of the (suspended imposition) and will then be reviewing reports which should be forthcoming on the issue and a decision will be made at that time.”

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