Ex-deputy coro­ner Smith is a preda­tor, says Schuylkill judge

The Hazleton Standard-Speaker - - LOCAL - BY PE­TER E. BORTNER STAFF WRITER

POTTSVILLE — For­mer Deputy Coro­ner Ed­ward C. Smith is a sex­u­ally vi­o­lent preda­tor, sub­ject­ing him to in­creased su­per­vi­sion if he ever leaves prison, due to his en­gag­ing in sex­ual ac­tiv­ity with a teenage boy, a Schuylkill County judge de­cided Fri­day. How­ever, the find­ing does not sig­nif­i­cantly af­fect Smith, 61, of Ta­maqua, since a Luzerne County judge al­ready had ruled him to be a sex­u­ally vi­o­lent preda­tor in an­other case.

“You un­der­stand what’s re­quired of you un­der Me­gan’s Law, you have to regis­ter?” Judge James P. Good­man asked Smith on Fri­day. “Yes, sir,” Smith replied. Good­man told Smith that as a sex­u­ally vi­o­lent preda­tor, he must at­tend monthly coun­sel­ing ses­sions for life, and that other peo­ple, in­clud­ing school su­per­in­ten­dents and day care op­er­a­tors, will be no­ti­fied if he lives in their area af­ter he leaves state prison.

The sanc­tions against Smith for be­ing a sex­u­ally vi­o­lent preda­tor are in ad­di­tion to the ones Good­man al­ready im­posed on him un­der Me­gan’s Law at the time of his guilty plea and sen­tenc­ing.

Smith, who also served as a deputy coro­ner in Car­bon and Schuylkill coun­ties, pleaded guilty Aug. 1 to two counts of in­vol­un­tary de­vi­ate sex­ual in­ter­course and one of cor­rup­tion of mi­nors. Prose­cu­tors with­drew charges of un­law­ful con­tact with a mi­nor, statu­tory sex­ual as­sault, in­de­cent as­sault, un­law­ful con­tact or com­mu­ni­ca­tion with a mi­nor-sex­ual abuse and know­ing or per­mit­ting pho­to­graph or film de­pic­tion of a child sex act on a com­puter.

At that time, Good­man sen­tenced Smith to serve eight to 16 years in a state cor­rec­tional in­sti­tu­tion, plus an ad­di­tional three years on pro­ba­tion. He also im­posed life­time Me­gan’s Law sanc­tions on Smith due to the plea to the IDSI charges.

Good­man also made his sen­tence con­sec­u­tive to the one of six to 20 years in state prison that Luzerne County Judge David W. Lu­pas im­posed on Smith on May 8.

In the Schuylkill County case, agents from the state at­tor­ney gen­eral’s of­fice charged that from fall 2015 through De­cem­ber 2016, Smith paid a boy for sex­ual acts and fa­vors in Ta­maqua. Po­lice said the boy was 14 and 15 years old when the in­ci­dents oc­curred.

In the Luzerne County case, the state at­tor­ney gen­eral’s of­fice had charged Smith with ar­rang­ing to meet with a per­son he thought was a teenage boy — who ac­tu­ally was an un­der­cover agent — in order to try­to­have­sex.

The Me­gan’s Law sanc­tions to which Smith will be sub­ject once he leaves prison re­quire him to pro­vide his name, ad­dress, So­cial Se­cu­rity num­ber, tele­phone num­bers, pho­to­graph, em­ploy­ment, any schools he might at­tend, reg­is­tra­tion of any ve­hi­cles he owns and other in­for­ma­tion to the Penn­syl­va­nia State Po­lice for the rest of his life. Any fur­ther vi­o­la­tion of the sanc­tions would be an ad­di­tional crime and again sub­ject Smith to an­other pros­e­cu­tion.


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