WHITMAN — A Whitman man is once again facing child pornography charges after a nearly five-month investigation led by federal officials with the Department of Homeland Security and Whitman Police Detective Joseph Bombardier.
Matthew Kulikowski, 37, of 52 Priscilla Road, Whitman was charged in U.S. District Court Sept. 10 on a federal criminal complaint based on the investigation which began April 2018 in relation to his alleged dissemination, possession and receiving of child pornographic material.
A former guard at Norfolk state prison, Kulikowski was taken into custody last week following the execution of the federal search warrant in which agents seized evidence that he allegedly was knowingly in possession of the obscene images. He was charged with one count of each: receipt of child pornography and possession of the same.
In an obtained affidavit supporting the criminal complaints against Kulikowski, a special agent with Homeland Security documented materials retrieved after a search warrant was served for the premise of Kulikowski’s residence. According to the special agent, Kulikowski’s tracking data placed him at the Whitman residence where the IP address matched a tablet device that had been flagged by investigators. The device reportedly contained 100 images of young children. The tablet was reportedly found inside a bookshelf of his bedroom.
Kulikowski had been required to wear a GPS tracking device and was on probation at the time of the Sept. 10 arrest for open cases from Plymouth District Court dating back to February of 2015.
Kulikowski’s 2015 charges in Plymouth Superior Court were: four charges of posing a child in a sexual way, one count each of possession of pornographic material, purchasing, disseminating obscene material of a minor, one count of indecent acts on a child under age 14, two counts of enticement of a child under age 16 and breaking and entering in the daytime.
The most recent charges stem from the five-month investigation, which began on April 6, 2018 when a flagged account through the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) and Canadian Police Centre for Missing and Exploited Children indicated a person using an account lovepreteengirl through an online chat via Kik App had transmitted child pornography.
According to the federal document, the special agent, who viewed the photographs that triggered the Kik report, offered his witness account in his probable cause statements that the materials did depict prepubescent girls under age 14 with visibly exposed genitalia. The Kik interactive app is a Canadian based company in Waterloo Ontario that owns Kik Messenger. Kik Messenger, commonly called Kik, is a freeware instant messaging mobile app from the Canadian company Kik Interactive, available free of charge on iOS and Android operating systems. The application is used to send and receive images, videos and other content and is usually available free for various tablet and mobile devices, according to their website.
The company’s safety information regarding usage and parental information is listed on the Kik’s website.
“Kik’s Safety Advisory Board is currently made up of four experts in the fields of child development, child exploitation and trafficking, criminology, cyber bullying, privacy and security,” Kik website data.
In published reports the Kik Application has been named in numerous incidents of enticement in minors.
Users of the application can often ‘hide’ their name in a false account and are not required to use their real name to set up an account. However IP addresses, and increased law enforcement specializing in cyber protection throughout the US and Canada are increasingly vigilant against the exploitation of children.
On April 6, 2018 Kik reported that user lovepreteengirl_rac sent apparent child pornographic material to another user from an IP address that was linked to Kulikowski.
The September 10 morning search warrant was issued on suspected child pornography tied to the distribution of such material.
Massachusetts State Police and Homeland Security agents along with Detective Joseph Bombardier interviewed and retrieved supporting evidence of the findings on cellular devices and a tablet which was seized at the home.
It was concluded that Kulikowski knowingly possessed child pornography and had proposed to intentionally transport the materials in his possession.
DA Timothy J. Cruz’s Office did not respond to requests for comment.