Chicago — Attorney General Kwame Raoul today announced a Washington County jury convicted an Ashley, Illinois man the Attorney General’s office prosecuted for sexually assaulting his two young stepdaughters in 2022.
Joseph Smith, 33, of Ashley, was found guilty in Washington County Circuit Court of two counts of predatory criminal sexual assault and one count of aggravated criminal sexual abuse, which are punishable by 12 to 120 years in prison. His next court appearance is June 6.
“I am pleased with the jury’s decision that holds this offender accountable for unspeakable abuse. Sexual assault and abuse of children can leave lifelong emotional scars, particularly when the abuse is perpetrated by someone in a position of trust,” Raoul said. “I appreciate the collaboration by the Washington County State’s Attorney’s office that allowed us to obtain justice for the victims.”
“I would like to thank the Attorney General’s Office and the Washington County Sheriff’s Office for their work in this case,” said Daniel Janowski, Washington County State’s Attorney. “Their cooperation and assistance have made our communities safer by convicting a sexual predator of these awful, heinous crimes.”
Raoul’s office prosecuted Smith, who sexually abused his two stepdaughters who were between the ages of 11 and 12 in 2022. Smith was arrested and charged on Jan. 7 in Washington County Circuit Court after the children reported the abuse at school.
Assistant Attorneys General Vanessa Minson and Bill Bryant for Raoul’s office handled this case.