News Story

 

Extradition of Sex Assault Suspect
6/13/2017 6:30:00 PM

 

Nature of Incident:

Extradition of Sex Assault Suspect

Report Number:

RB #16-180215

Location:

City of Thousand Oaks

Date & Time:

December 2016

Unit Responsible:

Thousand Oaks Police Department ' Investigations Bureau Sexual Assault Unit, El Paso Texas Police Department ' Investigations Bureau

 

(S)uspects, (V)ictims, (P)arty, (D)ecedent

City of Residence

Age

 

(A) Smith, Harold Eugene

(V) Juvenile Female

 

 

El Paso, Texas

Thousand Oaks

 

27

14

Narrative:

 

In December of 2016, a deputy assigned to the Thousand Oaks Police Department responded to a call for service where the victim's mother had discovered her 14 year old daughter had been communicating with a 27 year old adult male.  The victim's mother also discovered the adult male had driven approximately 850 miles from El Paso, Texas, and picked her daughter up from school.  The victim's mother discovered her daughter had been communicating with the adult male via social media. 

 

Detectives from the Thousand Oaks Investigative Bureau Sexual Assault Unit began investigating the case and learned the adult male suspect was Harold Eugene Smith who was residing in the City of El Paso, Texas.  Throughout the investigation, Detectives wrote multiple search warrants and were able to obtain a felony arrest warrant for Smith for charges that included committing a lewd act upon a child, sending harmful matter to a minor, and luring a child.  The Ventura County Superior Court issued a $1,000,000 warrant for the arrest of Smith.  Detective began a joint investigation with the El Paso Police Department.   

 

In January of 2017, Detectives with the Thousand Oaks Sexual Assault Unit traveled to El Paso Texas.  The El Paso Texas Police Department served a search warrant at Smith's residence and arrested him for possession of narcotics and the Ventura County Warrant.  Smith served a 5 month sentence in El Paso for the possession of narcotics.

 

On June 9, 2017, Detectives with the Thousand Oaks Sexual Assault Unit returned to El Paso Texas to extradite Smith back to Ventura County on the outstanding warrant.  On June 10, 2017, Smith was booked into the East County Jail facility.  He is currently being held on $1,000,000 bail.  Smith appeared in court on June 12, 2017, for his arraignment.  Smith pled not guilty to all counts.  Smith is scheduled to appear in Ventura County Superior Court on 6/23/17 at 8:15 a.m. for a preliminary hearing.   

 

The Thousand Oaks Police Department and the Ventura County Sheriff's Office would like to remind parents to be vigilant and monitor their children / teen's social media accounts as well as text, telephone, and online conversations.   Children put themselves at great risk by communicating online with individuals they do not know in person. Internet predators intentionally access sites that children visit and can even search for potential victims by location or interest.  If a predator is already communicating with a child, he or she can piece together clues from what the child mentions while online, including parents' names, where the child goes to school, and how far away the child lives from a certain landmark, store, or other locations.  Online grooming is a process which can take place in a short time or over an extended period of time. Initial conversations online can appear innocent, but often involve some level of deception as the predator (usually an adult) attempts to establish a relationship to gain a child's trust.  Additionally, online predators communicate with children via gaming systems that allow text messaging or voice communication. 

 

Some of the more common social media sites include the following:  Snapchat, Facebook, Kik, Instagram, Skype, twitter, and ooVoo.

 

 

 

Prepared by:

 

Sergeant Dan Hawes

 

 

Media Release Date:

 

June 13, 2017

 

 

Media Follow-Up Contact:

 

Detective Darin Yanover, (805) 947-6532

darin.yanover@ventura.org

 

 

Approved by:

Captain Bill Schierman