Things went downhill after Dickey reportedly used Tannerite, "an explosive substance created to detonate when shot by a high-velocity firearm" to trigger a colored powder that would reveal their baby's gender.
Dickey has called the day he started the fire one of the worst days of his life.
The fast-moving "Sawmill Fire" was ignited near Green Valley in April 2017 when Dickey shot a rifle at explosive powder inside a target.
However, a massive explosion set fire to a patch of dry grassland which spread rapidly to engulf an area covering 47,000 acres of land within a week of his party trick.
Dickey reported the fire immediately and admitted starting it, according to a US Department of Justice statement.
"I feel absolutely frightful about it", he said on Friday. Gender-reveal events, which have grown in popularity over the last decade, typically involve parents popping balloons, cutting into cakes, or doing other everyday tasks that reveal the color pink or blue, indicating the sex of their baby. The target Dickey shot was supposed to explode with either blue or pink powder.
He has also agreed to pay the state back for damages caused by the fire which he accidentally started.
Dickey's attorney did not immediately respond to a request for comment, and the baby's gender was not immediately clear. The trend has been criticized for reinforcing gendered stereotypes, and ignoring the fact that some children's gender identities don't match with their biological sex. The damage was estimated to be more than $8 million. He'll also make a public service announcement in conjunction with the U.S. Forest Service.
"It was a complete accident", Dickey said during an appearance in court. He will pay another $120,000 in monthly installments of $500 for the next 20 years.
There has been no confirmation as to whether Dickey will maintain his position as a Border Patrol agent, but Chapman said that he does not believe his client will lose his job since the fire was not intentional and therefore, he can not be charged with arson.
In a plea agreement, Dickey agreed to five years probation and will pay $220,000 in restitution, according to the Arizona Daily Star.