Dalton man found guilty of sexually abusing two children


PITTSFIELD -- A Dalton man is scheduled to be sentenced on Thursday after he was convicted of 11 charges related to the sexual abuse of a young boy and girl.

Robert F. Smith, 35, is being held without bail pending his sentencing in Berkshire Superior Court. On Friday, he was found guilty of 11 charges by a jury of eight men and four women following a five-day trial.

According to the Berkshire District Attorney's Office, Smith sexually abused a girl, who is now 17, beginning in 2004, when she was in the fourth grade, and continued to abuse her until June 2010. Smith also forced the boy, who is 14, to engage in sexual acts with the girl, forced them to watch pornography, and engaged them in sex acts with him, Assistant Berkshire District Attorney Gregory Barry told the jury at trial.

Both victims took the stand for the prosecution and are planning to give victim-impact statements to the court on Thursday prior to Smith's sentencing.

At trial, Smith's attorneys, Nathaniel K. Green and Joshua C. Hochberg, had argued that the allegations were brought by the victims in order to hide their own consensual sexual relationship.

The jury found Smith guilty of five counts of rape and abuse of a child without force, three counts of rape and abuse of a child aggravated by an age difference, two counts of dissemination of obscene matter to a minor, and a single count of inducing a minor to engage in sexual intercourse.

After the verdict was read, Smith looked pale and shaken. He was handcuffed and taken away by court personnel.

The maximum sentence for aggravated rape is life in prison with a minimum sentence of 10 years. Smith will also likely have to register as a sex offender and could be civilly committed after serving a prison sentence.

The investigation was conducted by state police detectives assigned to the Berkshire District Attorney's Office.


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