BELOIT - A convicted Beloit child rapist currently serving a lengthy prison sentence tied to two sex assaults from October of 2000 could go to trial next week on additional child sex assault charges.
Attorneys in the case left the door open for a possible last-minute plea agreement following a hearing Thursday in Rock County Circuit Court.
As previously reported by the Beloit Daily News, Jason A. Smith, 42, is charged with two felony counts of sexual assault of a child while armed with a dangerous weapon for an attack of a 13-year-old girl in July of 2000. The charges are a result of the Wisconsin Sexual Assault Kit Initiative and an investigation by the Beloit Police Department and Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigation.
The new allegations against Smith stem from an alleged assault in an alleyway near a home on Sixth Street in Beloit. The complaint says Smith raped the 13-year-old victim at gunpoint after taking her from Fourth Street to the alleyway on Sixth Street.
According to court records, Beloit police were notified on March 5, 2018, by the Wisconsin State Crime Lab of a DNA match of Smith from the rape kit stemming from the July 2000 sexual assault. Other samples of Smith's DNA were matched on April 11, 2018.
Smith is scheduled for trial on Nov. 11 before Rock County Branch One Judge Karl Hanson. Hanson said on Thursday he would expect the case will proceed with a trial, barring any last minute plea agreement.
Defense attorney Walter Isaacson said if a plea agreement is reached between Smith and prosecuting assistant attorneys general Amber Hahn and Noel Lawrence, Hanson would be notified by Nov. 8.
"If there is a resolution in this matter, I think it would be best to advise the court as soon as the parties know there is a resolution so that we can not needlessly bring in a jury, but I am going to want to hear from both sides," Hanson said.
In January of 2006, Smith was sentenced to two consecutive terms of 25 years in prison with 15 years extended supervision for the rape of two female victims, aged 18 and 14, as previously reported by the Beloit Daily News. The first assault occurred outside of the Beloit Mall - now known as the Eclipse Center - and the assault of the 14-year-old in a shed in the Town of Beloit in front of her younger sister. Both grizzly crimes occurred one month apart, with the new charges stemming from an alleged rape in July of 2000, months before the sexual attacks he was previously convicted on. DNA from the original cases was matched in 2003, following the conviction of an unrelated felony on gun and drug charges, according to court records.