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Press Release

Retired sergeant imprisoned for sending child pornography via online chat group

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Texas

GALVESTON, Texas – A 50-year-old Texas City resident has been sentenced for distribution of child pornography, announced U.S. Attorney Alamdar S. Hamdani.

Ryan N. Curving pleaded guilty Aug. 22, 2023.

U.S. District Judge Jeffrey V. Brown has now ordered him to serve 120 months in federal prison. At the hearing, the court heard additional evidence as to how Curving, a retired police sergeant from the Paterson, New Jersey, Police Department, sent child pornography videos to five other individuals through Kik Messenger. In handing down the prison term, the court noted that Curving’s actions of distributing those videos perpetuates the harm caused to the victims that are being sexually abused in the videos. Curving was further ordered to pay a $5,000 assessment to the Justice for Victims Trafficking Act and a $5,000 assessment to the Amy, Vicky and Andy Child Pornography Victim Assistance Act. He will also serve 10 years on supervised release following completion of his prison term, during which time, he will have to comply with numerous requirements designed to restrict his access to children and the internet. Curving will also be ordered to register as a sex offender.

“Curving hid behind a computer and watched helpless minor children being raped and abused,” said Hamdani. “It is deplorable that someone who worked as an officer for 25 years and took an oath to serve and protect the public, did just the opposite. This sentence demonstrates our dedication to holding anyone – regardless of their background – accountable for their part in the exchange of images that do nothing more than harm innocent lives.”

Curving had joined an online chat group on Kik that is known for the trading of child pornography and pictures of relatives as well as discussions and fantasies  of familial sexual abuse.

Curving came to the attention of law enforcement after utilizing his Kik account to distribute child pornography. On Dec. 6, 2022, authorities executed a search warrant at his residence. At that time, he admitted to downloading and sending child pornography to other Kik users and had been curious about child pornography for two years. 

Additionally, he admitted to creating a second Kik account in order to continue his conduct following the termination of his first one after administrators found child pornography in it. 

Curving was permitted to remain on bond and voluntarily surrender to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.

Homeland Security Investigations-Galveston conducted the investigation with the assistance of police departments in Pearland and Galveston and the Houston Metro Internet Crimes Against Children task force.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Kimberly Ann Leo prosecuted the case, which was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood (PSC), a nationwide initiative the Department of Justice (DOJ) launched in May 2006 to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. U.S. Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section leads PSC, which marshals federal, state and local resources to locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children and identifies and rescues victims. For more information about PSC, please visit DOJ’s PSC page. For more information about internet safety education, please visit the resources tab on that page.

Updated February 27, 2024

Topic
Project Safe Childhood