Jacksonville, Florida – U.S. District Judge Brian J. Davis has sentenced William Harvey Gulkis (30, Jacksonville) to 19 years and 7 months in federal prison for producing child pornography. The court also ordered Gulkis to pay $8,000 in restitution to the victims of his offenses, register as a sex offender, and serve a life term of supervised release.
Gulkis pleaded guilty on November 3, 2017.
According to court documents, in January 2017, law enforcement began an investigation after learning about the prolific sharing of child pornography files linked to Gulkis’s residence. Agents from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations also learned that an individual at Gulkis’s residence was sharing self-produced child erotica files on a photo-sharing website.
During the execution of a search warrant at Gulkis’s residence, agents discovered that Gulkis had produced and shared child erotica and child pornography files and had produced photographs of himself masturbating with young children in the background of the images. Gulkis also produced child pornography depicting sleeping children whose clothing he had removed to display their genitals.
In addition to the files he produced, Gulkis had collected more than 6,000 files of child pornography.
“This predator took advantage of these young children at their most vulnerable moments,” said HSI Tampa Special Agent in Charge James C. Spero. “Our greatest hope is that today’s sentencing will bring some small measure of closure to the innocent victims.”
This case was investigated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations and the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Kelly S. Karase.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc.