BOSTON — Matthew Kulikowski, 37, of 52 Priscilla Road, Whitman, was not present at the John Joseph Moakley United States Courthouse for a status hearing held in his federal case on one charge each of receipt of child pornography and possession of child pornography March 7, 2019.
The hearing was held in Courtroom 25, where Magistrate Judge Marianne B. Bowler presided. Attorneys Jane Peachy, an assistant public defender representing Kulikowski, and Anne Paruti, the prosecutor, told Bowler that they are discussing a “potential resolution short of trial,” indicating a possible plea deal.
The hearing was brief. The attorneys also discussed with the magistrate judge progress with discovery, which was on track, and Paruti added that state charges against Kulikowski will require some “coordination,” although she didn’t elaborate.
Kulikowski, a former MCI-Norfolk prison guard, was arrested and charged in federal court Sept. 10, 2018. Investigators say they found images depicting child pornography, including the sexual assaults of girls who appeared to be between 4- and 8-years-old, on a tablet computer found in his bedroom.
According to federal court documents and officials, while on pretrial release from Plymouth Superior Court, investigators from Homeland Security Investigations, Massachusetts State Police and Whitman Police discovered during a five-month-long investigation that Kulikowski’s home internet service was being used to distribute child pornography via a mobile app known as Kik Messenger.
The investigation into the federal charges originated in Canada, when the Ontario-based company that owns the Kik Messenger app reported an account suspected of transmitting child pornography to Canadian federal authorities.
That suspect account was then reported by Canadian authorities to American authorities in Ottawa because the pornography was transmitted to a U.S. internet service provider “geolocated to the United States.” That internet service was later determined to be the service at Kulikowski’s Priscilla Road address.
Authorities executed a search warrant at his family home Sept. 10, 2018. Court documents say Kulikowski and his father, Edward Kulikowski, were not originally cooperative with investigators, first lying about the existence of any tablets in the home.
Later, “[i]n a second conversation with Edward Kulikowski, agents asked him again where the [tablet] was. Edward Kulikowski led agents to a bookshelf in a hallway on the second floor of the home and removed a … tablet from within what appeared to be a photo album. Edward Kulikowski told agents that the evening before, while the family was gathered at the home, another adult family member observed Matthew Kulikowski in his bedroom using the tablet and notified Edward Kulikowski because Matthew Kulikowski was prohibited as a term of his pretrial release from using electronic devices. Edward Kulikowski said that he then hid the tablet in the bookshelf so that Matthew Kulikowski would not be able to use it.”
That tablet had been factory reset, but authorities hope to recover data from it, reports say. Investigators found a second tablet in Kulikowski’s bedroom, with its screen smashed, but they were able to recovery child pornography off that device.
Kulikowski first made headlines in 2014 when he was arrested and charged in Plymouth District Court and later indicted in Plymouth Superior Court in 2015 on three charges of posing a child in a sexual act; two charges of possession of child pornography; one charge of disseminating obscene material to a minor; one charge of indecent assault and battery on a child under age 14; two charges of enticement of a child under age 16; and one charge of breaking and entering a building in the daytime for a felony.
He is being held on both the state and federal charges.
Kulikowski is scheduled for a change of plea hearing on those state charges May 23, 2019, at 2 p.m. in Plymouth Superior Court in Plymouth before Judge Cornelius J. Moriarty, III.
As for the federal charges, another status conference is scheduled for April 26, 2019, at 2:15 p.m. in Courtroom 25 of the John Joseph Moakley United States Courthouse before Bowler.