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Man charged with second-degree rape

September 29, 1999

A Funkstown man has been charged with second-degree rape and a dozen additional charges for allegedly having sex with a child who was only 11 when the relationship began in 1997, according to court records.

Joseph James Smith, 25, of 43 Frederick Road, posted a $10,000 bond and was released from custody prior to a bond review Wednesday.

In addition to two counts of second-degree rape, Smith is also charged with two counts each of third-degree sex offense and child abuse; three counts each of second-degree assault and contributing to the condition of a child; and one count of second-degree sex offense.

According to Washington County Sheriff's Investigator Kenny Barnhart, the case came to his attention in late August through a Department of Social Services caseworker.

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The victim, now 13, told her sister that Smith had sexually assaulted her in the spring and summer of 1997, court records allege.

The sexual activity began with touching and progressed to intercourse on at least 10 occasions at two of her former homes in the Hagerstown area, court records said.

The contact ended after the child was placed in foster care in September 1997, court records said.

When she returned to live with a family member in August, Smith allegedly began touching her again and attempted to have intercourse but she refused, court records said.

It was then she reported the previous sexual contact to authorities, court records said.

- Marlo Barnhart

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