- Attorney General Paula T. Dow and Criminal
Justice Director Stephen J. Taylor announced
that a Paterson man pleaded guilty today
to sexually assaulting a girl who was under
the age of 13.
to Director Taylor, Paul Smith, 43, of Paterson,
pleaded guilty to first-degree aggravated
sexual assault before Superior Court Judge
Marilyn C. Clark in Passaic County. The
state will recommend that Smith be sentenced
to 12 years in state prison. The judge scheduled
sentencing for Smith for Jan. 7.
pleading guilty, Smith admitted that between
1999 and 2001, he sexually assaulted a girl
under the age of 13 on at least two occasions.
Smith was sentenced to prison in 2007 in
the case, after being convicted at trial
of sexual assault and endangering the welfare
of a child. However, that conviction was
overturned by the New Jersey Supreme Court
based a legal ruling made during the trial.
Attorney General Annmarie Taggart prosecuted
the case and took the plea today for the
Division of Criminal Justice.
investigation was coordinated by State Investigator
LaMonica Cross, Taggart and Deputy Attorney
General Dermot O’Grady. The Division
of Criminal Justice superseded the Passaic
County Prosecutor’s Office to prosecute
the case due to a conflict of interest.