Former teacher, camp counselor jailed in Mass. for child sexual abuse

A former longtime teacher at Episcopal Academy in Pennsylvania was sentenced to four years in a Massachusetts prison followed by a lifetime of probation for the sexual abuse of three children at a summer camp in 1981, according to Barnstable County First Assistant District Attorney Brian Glenny.

Richard Perkins Smith, 65, of the 600 block of West Saint Andrews Drive in Middletown, PA pleaded guilty before Barnstable Superior Court Judge Gary Nickerson to three counts of indecent assault and battery involving children at a Cape Cod Christian camp where he worked as a counselor.

Smith admitted to fondling the buttocks of one young camper and the penis of another, said Glenny. He also admitted to rubbing his genitals on a third victim. All of the offenses took place inside Smith’s cabin, and involved one child aged 14 or older and two children younger than 14.

Glenny said an investigation began following the 2011 revelation from former U.S. Sen. Scott Brown, R-Mass., that he was sexually assaulted at a Cape Cod summer camp as a child.

Glenny said his office followed all leads in that case, but the only subject still alive and not barred by a statute of limitations was Smith, due to his return to Pennsylvania after the religious summer camp in Sandwich, Mass., had ended.

Smith, who has been incarcerated at the Barnstable County Correctional Facility since April 2013, is also facing charges of sexual abuse of children in Pennsylvania after child pornography was allegedly found on his home computer in 2013. He will be held in Massachusetts on a fugitive from justice warrant after his release from the Barnstable prison and transferred to Pennsylvania to appear on that charge.

Glenny added that the case could not have gone forward without the cooperation of the victims and said he believed the consecutive two-year sentences Smith received were fair in light of what they had gone through.

“We thought it was deserving of committed time and a very lengthy period of probation, so there could at least be some group or agency keeping an eye on him for the rest of his life,” Glenny said.

Smith will also have to register as a sexual offender for as long as a Massachusetts board feels is necessary, which Glenny said will likely be the rest of his life. He added that Smith suffers from a host of health issues.

The child pornography charge in Pennsylvania stems from an alleged admission Smith made to Massachusetts State Police troopers in 2012 when they were investigating allegations of sexual abuse at the camp.

Smith initially told troopers that he had gay pornography on his computer and deleted the images, but later said there might be pictures of children in emails, according to an affidavit of probable cause for his arrest. Pennsylvania State Police executed a search warrant on Smith’s home and seized two computers, a thumb drive and 23 CDs.

A forensic audit of the seized items allegedly revealed one video depicting a known child pornography victim who was 14 at the time the video was made.

Authorities also revealed at the time the child pornography charge was lodged that Smith admitted in 2012 to molesting a student while teaching at Episcopal, but a statute of limitations prevented filing any criminal charges in that case.

Smith’s affiliation with the school ended in 1998 after he had worked there for about 20 years.

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