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Police fail to arrest child porn suspect 5 years ago

Christopher Nicolini, Mugshot: St. Joseph County Jail

NORTH LIBERTY, Ind. — REAL News Michiana is working to get more details on why it took police nearly 5 years to finally arrest a man they’ve known has been in possession of child porn since 2018. According to court documents uncovered by RNM, the St. Joseph County Police Department or Prosecutor’s Office was first notified about 48-year-old Christopher Nicolini downloading and storing child pornography in January of 2018. However, it appears they did not move forward with a thorough investigation, if any at all.

According to court documents, an officer at the Bremen Police Department started the first child porn investigation into Nicolini in January of 2018. The IP address for Nicolini’s devices were coming from a CenturyLink service provider. However, after getting a subpoena for information regarding the account, the officer discovered the suspect was located at a home in North Liberty in St. Joseph County. The Bremen PD Officer then recommended the case to “St. Joseph County.” While the narrative into the case is extremely detailed up to that point, it simply stops after the referral is made in January of 2018. The narrative then picks up with the new case with the Indiana State Police several years later.

In fact, according to court documents, Nicolini seems to simply drop off of law enforcement radar until January of 2021, when the Indiana State Police were notified about child porn through a tip from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. ISP then started their own, separate investigation, leading to Nicolini’s arrest on 7 counts of child pornography last Thursday. An ISP detective discovered the old investigation while working on the new one.

Subscribers can read the court documents uncovered by RNM below. Information regarding the 2018 investigation by Bremen PD is located on page 14.

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RNM reached out to St. Joseph County Sheriff Bill Redman’s attorney and spokesperson, Troy Warner, for comment. We asked him the following questions: “What did St. Joseph County do with the information? Did they investigate? Did they not investigate? Why wasn’t this person arrested years ago?”

RNM also reached out to the St. Joseph County Prosecutor’s Office to find out if they ever received the case.

RNM then reached out to the Bremen Police Department. It turns out, the officer involved in the 2018 investigation is no longer with the department. RNM left a message for the Bremen Police Chief and reached out to the former officer on Facebook.

As of publication, nobody mentioned above had responded.

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