A man with autism, whose recruitment into the Marines is now under investigation, pleaded guilty Monday to desertion and child pornography charges.

Joshua Fry, 21, enlisted in the Marine Corps in January 2008 while living in a California group home for adults with disabilities. He was encouraged to enlist by a Marine recruiter who knew about his disability and urged Fry to leave that detail off of his enlistment application, Fry’s lawyer alleges in court documents.

Fry is diagnosed with autism and bipolar disorder and has a history of behavior problems, including time spent in a lockdown treatment center. Fry’s grandmother is his conservator, an arrangement that was already in place at the time of his enlistment.

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Fry was court martialed in the summer of 2008 because he was found with child pornography and left duty without leave.

Now, the circumstances around Fry’s enlistment are being examined by military officials and have also raised the ire of some members of Congress who may hold hearings on the case.

As for Fry, under a plea deal, he was sentenced to one year and a bad conduct discharge from the Marine Corps. However, he will get credit for time already served and will be released soon, reports ABC News. To read more click here.


Previous stories on this topic:

Marines Enlist Man With Autism Despite Conservatorship (June 1, 2009)