The John Joseph Moakley U.S. Courthouse, where a judge sentenced Robert Wharton on Tuesday. (Photo: Sam Bayard via Flickr)

A Cambridge man will serve five years in prison and five years of supervised release after pleading guilty to one count of receiving child pornography and one count of possessing child pornography, according to a Tuesday press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Massachusetts.

Robert Wharton, 31, was charged in late July and pleased guilty in December before the Tuesday sentencing by U.S. District Court Chief Judge Dennis Saylor IV.

Federal investigators found Wharton had used the Kik messaging app to pay for access to Internet links containing child pornography. A search turned up illegal images and videos on Wharton’s phone.

Wharton worked from December 2019 to July 11 on the enrichment program staff for the Kennedy Community School & Neighborhood Council – the after-school program for Kennedy-Longfellow School families and neighborhood residents, which is run by the city’s Department of Human Service’s community schools division. His employment was confirmed among city officials. He taught a daily three-hour program called K-Lo Cubs for children in the junior kindergarten and kindergarten program that gave children the “opportunity to participate in daily teacher planned activities” that included experiential learning time and math and science concepts, literacy activities and outdoor time. Wharton was also a volunteer assistant coach with Somerville Pop Warner Football.

Wharton could have served at least five years in prison or as many as 20, a lifetime of supervised release and a fine of $250,000 for each of the two criminal charges against him, according to a U.S. Attorney’s Office statement last year.

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Man charged with having child pornography was Kennedy-Longfellow after-school worker
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