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Jailed Holland Man Gets Public Defender in Kansas Teen Sex Case

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Richard Jessie Smith (photo courtesy Johnson County Kansas Sheriff's Dept.)
Richard Jessie Smith (photo courtesy Johnson County Kansas Sheriff's Dept.)

OLATHE, KS (WHTC) - A 46-year-old Holland man was back in a suburban Kansas City courtroom yesterday. Richard Jessie Smith has been held in the Johnson County, Kansas Jail on 25 thousand dollars bond since his arrest at a motel southwest of KC on June 9th. He’s charged with sexual exploitation of a child and contributing to a child’s misconduct, as prosecutors claim that Smith developed an online relationship with an unnamed 16-year-old local girl, and then drove to the area to consummate the relationship at a motel. The two were apprehended without incident after the teen’s parents reported her as a runway the day before. Smith had a public defender assigned to him yesterday, and will return to District Court in Olathe, Kansas on August 1st for a preliminary hearing. If convicted, Smith could get nearly three years in prison and up to a 300 thousand-dollar fine.

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