Ashley Man Convicted of Sex Crimes by Jury
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By Todd Marver
A 33-year-old Ashley man was found guilty in Washington County Court on two counts of predatory criminal sexual assault and one count of aggravated criminal sexual abuse, which are punishable by 12 to 120 years in prison. His next court appearance is June 6.
Attorney General Kwame Raoul announced on Tuesday, May 2 that a Washington County jury convicted Joseph Smith, who the Attorney General’s office prosecuted for sexually assaulting his two young stepdaughters in 2022, according to a press release from Raoul’s office.
Raoul’s office prosecuted Smith, who sexually abused his two stepdaughters who were between the ages of 11 and 12 in 2022, according to the release. Smith was arrested and charged on Jan. 7 in Washington County Circuit Court after the children reported the abuse at school.
Assistant Attorneys General Vanessa Minson and Bill Bryant for Raoul’s office handled the case.
In the release, Washington County State’s Attorney Daniel Janowski thanked the Attorney General’s Office and the Washington County Sheriff’s Office for their work in the case.
“Their cooperation and assistance have made our communities safer by convicting a sexual predator of these awful, heinous crimes,” he said.
In the release, Raoul said he appreciated the collaboration by the Washington County State’s Attorney’s office.
“That allowed us to obtain justice for the victims. I am pleased with the jury’s decision that holds this offender accountable for unspeakable abuse. Sexual assault and abuse of children can leave lifelong emotional scars, particularly when the abuse is perpetrated by someone in a position of trust,” he said.