A Barksdale airman pleads guilty to murdering his 2-year-old stepson.

According to a news release from the 2d Bomb Wing at Barksdale, 21-year-old Colton Ballance admitted this morning in federal court that he strangled his stepson, William "Cole" Corkern, and left him to die in his bed at the family's home on Barksdale Air Force Base.

His military court martial took place at the U.S. Courthouse in Shreveport. Ballance has been sentenced to 34 years confinement. He was also reduced in rank to E-1 (Airman Basic) and dishonorably discharged from service.

Ballance was assigned to the 2nd Security Forces Squadron at Barksdale.

"Today's sentencing is an important chapter in this tragic story," said 2nd Bomb Wing Commander, Col. Ty Neuman, in a news release. "While there is still much healing to be done, the military justice system has prevailed in holding the accused party responsible for his actions."

Ballance has been in custody on the base since October 14, 2015, and was charged with murder on December 23.