Charleston, West Virginia – A judge handed down a sentence of up to 775 years in prison to a man convicted of filming an infant being sexually abused by himself and his former fiancé.
From what the judge said, jury members who were forced to watch the videos were brought to tears by what they saw.
According to court docs, Richard Smith II filmed himself sexually abusing a baby girl. The judge told Smith he was one of the most evil people she'd ever encountered, and the videos he made that jurors had to watch “brought grown men to tears.” https://t.co/4d7d0a6FAm
— FOX59 News (@FOX59) March 5, 2020
Kanawha Circuit Judge Tera Salango was disgusted by the man standing before her for sentencing on March 4th.
Richard Smith, 41, was convicted in February for eleven counts of first-degree sexual abuse, four counts of sexual assault and five counts of sexual abuse by a parent, guardian, custodian or person in position of trust
Judge Salango wanted to make sure Smith would never leave prison, handing down a sentence between 205 and 775 years.
Richard Smith II, 41, will most likely die in prison after being sentenced to a minimum of 205 years in prison for child sex abuse. https://t.co/xhLOu06xOr
— KAPP-KVEW (@KAPPKVEW) March 4, 2020
Smith, as well as his former fiancé Roseanna Thompson, were arrested back in May of 2018 under allegations of the duo recording acts of sexual abuse on Thompson’s granddaughter.
The recorded acts were said to have taken place in 2015.
The reason for the three years between the filmed sexual assaults and the time of arrest was due to Morgan Smith, who later married Richard after he separated with Thompson.
Morgan Smith was cleaning her home one day when she discovered the videos containing the abuse of the infant.
She immediately contacted authorities saying she discovered child pornography inside of her home. Morgan has since divorced Richard Smith.
Smith and his ex-girlfriend, Roseanna Thompson, were arrested in May 2018 and accused of recording the abuse of Thompson's granddaughter three years earlier, state police said at the time. The arrests came after soldiers were informed https://t.co/oRrLmWSag3 pic.twitter.com/6hN1P3R0TF
— wikiagebio (@wikiagebio1) March 4, 2020
When Judge Salango delivered the sentence to Richard Smith in court, she stated:
“I think that you are one of the most evil persons who I’ve ever encountered.”
The judge did not shy away from her thoughts regarding Smith, when she added:
“I’ve worked in law enforcement and I have been a judge for a while. You are certainly the epitome of evil. I’m going to make sure you never do this to any other child for the rest of your life.”
Man sentenced up to 775 years in prison for filming infant being molested https://t.co/9BIif0ahdo
"You are certainly the epitome of evil. I’m going to make sure you never do this to any other child for the rest of your life," said the judge to Richard Smith pic.twitter.com/RdI1f8p47O
— Local 12/WKRC-TV (@Local12) March 5, 2020
Assistant prosecutor Debra Rusnak described the convicted child abuser as a “monster”, and stated the following about the content on the videos that led to his conviction:
“The things that he did to that child are the things that nightmares are made of.”
Smith declined to say anything before his sentence was delivered in court.
Matthew Victor, Smith’s attorney for the trial, stated that there’s also federal charges that Smith is facing related to the acts he committed.
Thompson is also facing the same twenty charges as Smith. Her trial is set to begin in April of this year.
Meanwhile, in Benton County, Arkansas, a new trial recently commenced for another monster.
A father who was convicted in 2016 of killing his 6-year-old son by raping him with a stick during a camping trip had his conviction overturned last year.
The reason? A technicality is at fault here, and now the retrial has begun this past week to finally put this monster to death.
In March of 2015, 50-year-old Mauricio Torres was on a camping trip in Missouri with his 6-year-old son Isaiah and his wife Cathy. During the trip, the young boy had eaten a piece of cake without permission, so his father decided to punish him by sodomizing him with a stick.
After the brutal act, the boy’s mother then forced young Isaiah to perform rigorous exercises after the assault, while pushing him down into the ground. When the family returned to Arkansas, the boy was admitted to the hospital where he died as a result of his injuries.
After a trial where the gruesome details were revealed to the jury, Torres was convicted of capital murder and sentenced to death in November of 2016. Then in April of 2019, the Arkansas Supreme Court overturned the conviction because the act that led to the child’s death was committed outside the state of Arkansas.
According to state laws with regard to prosecution, the crime that was central to pursue a capital murder conviction had to have taken place in the state where they’re being prosecuted.
Thankfully, prosecutors aren’t letting this one go, and they’re again going for a conviction of capital murder and seeking the death penalty.
The proceedings began on February 27th inside the Benton Circuit County Court. State prosecutors plan to get the capital murder conviction by proving that previous child abuse allegations against the defendant took place in Arkansas.
During the original trial against Torres, there was outrage after details emerged that the Arkansas’ Department of Human Services were alerted to suspected child abuse in the defendant’s home. TWICE.
In 2014, someone at the Bentonville school attended by Isaiah made several calls to the child abuse hotline maintained by the State Police. One investigated allegation was listed as “inadequate supervision” against the parents of Isaiah, and another investigated allegation was for abuse listed as “cuts, bruises, welts” within the DHS’s record systems.
Both claims were found to be unsubstantiated at the time.
Did any caseworker even bother looking into the home of the child at the time? When police searched the home of Torres the day after Isaiah’s death was ruled as a homicide, what they saw was unnerving.
Investigators found blood splatter on the walls, floor, and even ceiling of the master bedroom. There was also blood found on a pair of 15-pound dumbbells, along with vomit and a stethoscope on the bed.
When doctors had first gotten hold of the unresponsive child just after midnight on March 30th, 2015, they noted signs of brutal abuse on him. Doctors noted the presence of chemical burns on the child’s back, signs of blunt force trauma to the head, and the bleeding in his rectum that caused him to pass.
Even more upsetting about botched investigation by the DHS, was that the couple previously had their six other children removed from their care due to abuse.
A Northeast Arkansas judge removed the children from the care of Cathy and Mauricio Torres sometime between 2004 and 2005 due to signs of physical and sexual abuse. How does a couple lose their parental rights to six kids, and the DHS not even think to check previous records on parents accused of abuse?
One of the adult children of Torres, who remembers being abused by his father as a young boy, stated the following about Isaiah’s passing:
“If [DHS] actually did their job and followed up like they should, this could have been prevented. I mean, they had their parental rights taken away before Isaiah was even born, you know? Why was he able to get him?”
All the signs were there, and nothing was done. This could have been prevented, but all one can hope for now is that justice is served.