Man Waterboarded Children as 'Learning Experience,' Now on Probation

A Montana man has admitted to waterboarding four children to teach them a lesson. Thanks to a plea agreement, he will only receive probation instead of two years in jail.

William Albert Province, 42, reportedly simulated the drowning of four children, including his own two sons. All four boys, whose names have not been released because they are minors, but whose ages range from 9 to 15, have recovered from the ordeal.

A girlfriend told the court that Province had straddled each of the four boys and placed his hands over the child's face and mouth. He then poured water on their faces to simulate the drowning, court records said. She added that Province said it was "a learning experience."

Prosecutors decided to offer a plea deal in exchange for a full confession from Province. He pleaded guilty to four misdemeanor counts of endangering the welfare of a child and managed to avoid felony charges of making threats against public officials and other unknown charges.

Province's threats were enough to have him arrested, and police found plenty of ammunition and rifles at his home. It's unknown whether police removed the weapons from the residence, given the threats and the waterboarding, but if he is on probation, it is likely that all weapons were taken away.

Now Province will serve two years on probation. He must stay out of legal trouble in order to avoid being arrested and put back into prison.

This is not the first time a parent has been accused, or found guilty, of waterboarding a child. In August, Dr. Melvin Morse was arrested and charged with reckless endangerment of a child after his daughter told authorities he held her face and nose under running water, causing her to choke, the News Journal reported.

This went on for two years, and Morse and his wife were both charged with reckless endangerment, conspiracy, and endangering the welfare of a child. The girl and her siblings were taken into the custody of the state.