A North Carolina man has been charged in U.S. District Court in Bangor with failure to pay child support.
Steve J. Matisko Jr., 53, of Raleigh owes more than $58,000 in back child support for his son, now 26, who was born and raised in Caribou, according to the complaint. Matisko is due in federal court in Maine on Oct. 31.
Matisko has lived outside Maine, in Alaska, Texas and North Carolina, since a short time after his son was born.
The Maine Department of Health and Human Services in 2015 asked its sister agency in the U.S. government to help recover funds paid to Matisko’s son and his mother through federally funded welfare programs, the complaint said.
The U.S. attorney’s office handles the prosecution of cases in which child support is in arrears when the parent owing the support does not reside in the same state as the parent who has primary custody of the child or children. Money recovered most often goes to repay the state for assistance paid out in welfare benefits.
Assistant Attorney General James Moore, who is prosecuting the case, and Federal Defender James Nixon, who represents Matisko, declined to comment on the case.
Matisko was arrested Oct. 4, according to documents filed in federal court in Raleigh. He was released on personal recognizance bail on conditions that he have no contact with his son or the boy’s mother. Matisko also must submit to a DNA test, which is routinely required of defendants in federal cases.
For more than two decades, Matisko has refused submit his DNA for a paternity test to despite court orders to do so, the complaint said.
In October 1995, when the boy was 5, a District Court judge ruled Matisko was the father despite his refusal to show up in court as ordered or provided DNA for testing. At that time, the judge ordered Matisko to pay $56 per week toward the support of his son.
By seizing funds in 2005 from Matisko’s North Carolina bank accounts, the state was able to recover about $1,250, according to the complaint. Matisko has never voluntarily made a payment.
If convicted, Matisko will be ordered to pay back child support. He also faces up to two years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000, if found guilty.